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Skyfire's Mind Revolution builds upon Timeless Departure and expands upon it, for the better. Mind Revolution fixes many (very small) issues Timeless Departure had. The album has a heavier feel and is far more powerful than its predescesor.
The vocals on Mind Revolution are almost flawless. Henrick Wenngren did an amazing job with both writing and screaming. Tobias Björk wrote quite a bit of the lyrics in Timeless Departure, leaving Henrick to fill in the gaps. Henrick did well with the lyrics. However, there is one problem. At times the music seems to drown out the vocals at several points in the CD.
The guitars in Mind Revolution step up and play a more significant role than they did in Timeless Departure. The keyboards take a step back, and allow the new guitars to fill in, creating an amazing, crisp, and heavier sound. Unfortunately the bass is nearly inaudible throughout the CD, making only one or two noteworthy appearances. The new drummer Joakim Johnsson filled in Tobias' role perfectly. Joakim plays quite flawlessly throughout the CD, matching the music perfectly.
The Album opens with an amazing song, Nightmares Nevermore. The song combines excellent Keyboards, guitars, and vocals that are carried throughout most of the album. The album feels like it stalls slightly with Haunted By Shadows. While a good song, it feels weaker than most other songs on the album. Colliding in Mind feels a little rushed in the beginning, but it's refreshing to hear after Haunted By Shadows. Dawn Will Break puts the album into high gear, pulling off the excellency that Nightmares Nevermore had.
While the next two songs, Uncloud The Sky and Shapes of Insanity mesh together a little bit, thats not really a bad thing. Both songs have excellent structure and the vocals on shapes of insanity are very well done. Blinded By Euphoria is near perfect, It is one of the best melo-death songs I have ever heard, with an excellent intro. Henrick's voice is top-notch in this song, you can actually hear the bass, and the chorus is very well written. Caged 401 is a good song, but it lacks the powerful feeling that most of the other songs have. Mind Revolution is perfection. The lyrics and the music really capture the true feeling of Skyfire.
So in conclusion Mind Revolution gives us an excellent mix of guitars and keyboards. Henrick's voice doesn't sound quite as raw as it did on Timeless Departure, and that is most certainly for the better. I would highly recommend this CD for some of Skyfire's best songs.
A cursory glance at Mind Revolution at the time of its release triggered many a furled brow. For a band who delivered what is retroactively a flawed modern classic in Timeless Departure, seeing the band members mocked up as X-Men castoffs on an otherwise discursive artwork triggered a collective whimper of skepticism amongst the fans. I wish I can say this lives up to its direct predecessor, and while it doesn't quite match Timeless Departure, Mind Revolution has undoubtedly been basked in a more appealing, revisionist light in the decade since its release.
A different Skyfire to be sure, but one that finally knows when to cut and run. Timeless Departure has some truly overlong cuts (the title track especially) that while riveting in sections, failed to enthrall for the entire duration. Most of these arrangements are more stripped-down and to the point in comparison, and while this on its own should sound the death knell immediately, the leads are still exceptionally ripe and moving. Hanner and Edlund continue to refine the power metal thrashing evident on the first record, solidifying their position as genre innovators. Love them or hate them, when a Skyfire tune boots up you always know it is them. That distinctive flair to the leads, Henrik's spacious roars, they certainly have a unique and distinctive style.
...and this is truly what saves Mind Revolution more than anything. There are less keyboards, and while they are delivered in a style more congruent with Spectral than Timeless Departure, they are universally exceptional. Nearly every twinkling lead and throbbing string section will stick with you, which is a feather the debut couldn't even stick in its haughty cap. "Nightmares Nevermore" is a great fucking example. A concise little cooker, the breakdown at 1:30 with the fluttering of the synths underpinning another keeper of a lead tells you all you need to know. The material is also more thoughtfully arranged this time around. Timeless Departure featured some clunky transitions, and it was evident that many of the songs were pieced together using various and sundry arrangements without much of an ear for consistency. That flaw has been disposed of, giving way to a number of impressive numbers like "Shapes of Insanity, "Caged," and the album highlight: "Blinded by Euphoria."
Wenngren also comes into his own here, delivering his depressive and introspective lyrical themes with a vigor finally matching the tone of the rest of the music, which redeems his buried effort on the debut. The rest of the production is rather unbalanced and weak sounding, however. The guitars are far too trebly, and the snare has virtually no depth. Jonsson proves that he is a suitable replacement for Björk, but he didn't truly blow me away until Esoteric. While Edlund and Hanner have never been guitarists to incorporate solos, it matters little with material this memorable. If you dig Spectral consider Mind Revolution its kid brother. Not quite as endearing (at least to me) as Timeless Departure, but a true transition album if there ever was one, and a forgotten gem.
Really, it doesn't take much time for newbie listeners to put a CoB tag on it. A melodeath outfit mixed with power metal melodies. This band is quite different though. Although the sound may be quite the same, the songwriting, riff usage and intelligence are all on a whole different niveau. A prime example is the lack of extraneous neo-classical soloing. Skyfire made the right choice to focus more on the songs itself than on the solo's. Also, the lyrics tend to look a lot more intelligent, with subjects as depression, as opposed to lyrics of the reaper of death.
Still I would say CoB's best album is still beter than this one. Though my paragraph above looks promising, it only counts for several songs. Blinded by Euphoria is one of melodeath's best songs to date, featuring a highly catchy chorus and a good use of dynamics within the song. Other songs which would do well on compilation discs are Nightmares Nevermore, Haunted by Shadows and Dawn will Break. Those songs are powerdeath at it's best. Sadly songs like Colliding in Mind and Caged 401 feel rushed, cliché and unworthy to be on an album with songs such as Blinded by Euphoria.
The album lacks diversity, but only on a small scale. Songs feel different enough to be considered "different", but it still needs that extra effort to create a flowing disc of pure awesomeness. Good try Skyfire, but there are still plenty of things to work on.
Skyfire are a confusing bunch of musicians. Apparently, they are meant to play a style which closely resembles not only melodic death, but power and progressive metal too! It's no wonder I get awfully confused when listening to their music. I can see that their lyrics are based around depression, but if I were to judge the music alone, I really wouldn't have guessed that. Their music is so upbeat, it's unbelievable. We can safely assume this is where the power metal genre comes into play. As i've never been a fan of power metal, this was probably quite a risky band to listen to.
When I found this band, I was hoping to hear a unique styling. I certainly got that, but i'm not so sure it's a positive thing. Skyfire seem to be aiming for a number of different things when they play, which detracts from the music. Genre confusion is something I hate, and Skyfire have seemingly done that. Blending melodic death, which I have never liked anyway, with another genre I don't particularly like, power metal. The melodic death aspect is mostly seen in the horrendous vocals. They remind me of the late At The Gates material, which nobody really seems to like. Melodic death seems to bring out the worst of the growled style of vocals. They're piercing, but only in terms of giving me a headache. Especially alongside those tedious synths. Everything is pitched too high. The vocals sound as if the vocalist may burst a blood vessel at any moment. They don't driven the music forward, they stall it. In comparison to acts with these genres, Skyfire are probably one of the best, but that isn't saying much.
Their style is quite cheesy at times, which I simply cannot stand. Those cheery synths make a dent in my skull. Or perhaps that's just because i'm banging my head against a wall. 'Mind Revolution' reminds me of something that would be used during a interrogation session. It's torturous. Those guitars trying to out do one another. 'Sick' riffs attempting to be introduced with power and progressive styling. It all adds up to an uneven attempt to create something brilliantly unique. Well, it's certainly unique, but rarely ever for the right reasons. The melodic death riffs which try to out play one another situated next to very annoying keyboards.
Thankfully everything is properly tuned, so we don't have to contend with that element. Songs are far too quick to progress. There is no time to get used to what Skyfire are attempting to create. Songs tend to come and go whilst blending together to form what seems to be one song. There is a lot of variation, which doesn't allow the audience the time to keep up with the fast nature of Skyfire. The band also try for an aggressive style, but it really isn't pulled off. Adding death metal growls to the proceedings doesn't make 'Mind Revolution' any more aggressive. The keyboards don't allow for the progression of that side of the music. As I said, they're far too upbeat to pull off sounding aggressive or as if this is meant to be about depression.
The lyrics are just as cheesy as the music:
"The dark side
Has taken over me
I feel the beast inside me come to life
As I leave the human soul"
The use of personification is poor and rather clichéd, though I suppose that suits the band because that's how they sound. Tired and clichéd. Skyfire give a rather poor account of themselves here with their fast and furious blend of nothingness. if you're after annoying solos and cheesy keyboards, this is for you!
After being in awe from Skyfire's debut album Timeless Departure, I couldn't wait to listen to this one. The band has once again done an incredible job on their second release, Mind_Revolution, even though coming up with a sick CD twice in a row is pretty difficult to do and is where most bands fail these days.
There are so many great points to MR. It starts off with "Nightmares Nevermore", which is a fast-paced brutal song with sick melodies and a complex song structure
to kick you into gear for the rest and is a great start-off for the album.
Basically this is pretty similar to their debut Timeless Departure, except they have advanced in many different ways. Their melodies are more complex and interesting, and they play much more aggressively. You can tell they have become more skilled in musicianship. The vocalist experiments with low growling, which there was none of on TD. They also have a new drummer, who is just as good, if not better, than Tobias(who was awesome too). Scattered across the album are some very catchy and brutal beats that flow with the heavy guitar which calls for some godly headbanging, and he even does some occasional blast beats.
The ONLY downsides to MR are that just a couple songs are a bit boring(Haunted By Shadows and Caged) and are definitely below Skyfire standards.
But other than that, this CD is a must and is a fucking sick release from the best of Melodic Death. m/
For long awaited fans this second album had a lot to rely on. After the realse of the bands first album, Timeless Departure, many people weren't sure on how good the second album would be. After the drop of Tobias, the bands old drummer, many people weren't sure how the writing of the lyrics and the beats that would play could add up to his unique skill. Than it was time for the album to come out.
When I first popped in the album and heard Nightmares Nevermore I was absolutly stunned. It was a great mix of hard guitars, great vocals, and stunning keyboading. It was a great opener song to show the band unique style and talent. The singer Henrik Wenngren had a lot more lyrics to write by himself this time, since Tobias was one of the main writers for songs like Dimensions Unseen on the Timeless Departure album, but if you listen to songs like Blinded By Euphoria and Colliding In Mind, you will find that he did a fantastic job composing the lyrics to the music.
This album is definitly worthy of getting and is a great sequel to Timless Departure. If you are a fan of Children of Bodom, Norther, In Flames (old), I would highly recommend getting both of this bands albums. Song to listen for: Dawn Will Break, Blinded By Euphoria, Nightmares Nevermore, Haunted By Shadows, Mind Revolution.