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High pitched vocals - 80%

Crossover, December 17th, 2016

Elegy are a progressive power metal band in the Nation or Royal Hunt register of things. They always employ a shredder, Henk van der Laars on this release, and play a melodic yet wild style that would become indicative of the genre.

The music is pretty solid here with the low-point being Eduard Hovinga sky-high screaming. The album kicks off with a really wankey-but tasteful sounding guitar part. The music is blazing fast and technical power/speed metal. Hovinga is just trying to sing as high as he can mimicking guys like John Cyriis. He is a bit more palatable than Cyriis, if that makes sense; similar to Mario La Mole of Mind Odyssey, but worse. The solo interludes are cool in the first song and in general on the whole album. It is one step from the mindless-wankery that can plague the prog genre. There are some decently cool riffs to be found too. And drummer Dirk Bruinenberg can also play some impressive material. They also have four, count em, four keyboardists on this album according to M-A. Lets not forget Martin Helmantel on bass who is readily audible doing a typical bass performance you would here on albums like these often branching into its own thing rather than mindlessly follow the drums or guitars.

They jump right into a half ballad with the second track. It reminds me a bit of Fates Warning. It is a very good track again with some good shredding and good riffs. Hovinga restrains himself for parts of the song which is an added bonus. It starts off mellow and progressively gets quite nice and heavy. The true-ballad Lust For Life, is mediocre-to-good. The solo is hilarious. After a fairly calm song it just busts out with full sonic fury and continues for what seems a minute. these guys love to just yank on their guitars. There is also a useless shred track titled Anouk and a useless 39 second ballad Close Your Eyes.

Honestly, the songwriting level here is pretty damn nice. The band noodle around and do the whole time signature changing thing but it does not sound as bad as a lot of other bands to attempt the genre. The songwriting is pretty good here. The closer Erase Me is another half-ballad and despite the raucously-screamed vocals it is a nice track. The emotive guitars midway through seal the deal. And the rest of the tracks here are good too, including the title track.

I think Elegy would hit their stride with their later vocalist Ian Parry on the Forbidden Fruit album which would contain my favorite track from them (and one of the earliest metal tunes I ever heard, Force Majeure), but on this release they do a fine job despite their limitations with singer Hovinga.

Recommended tracks: Windows of the World, Angel's Grace, Circles in the Sand, Darkest Night, Supremacy, Erase Me.