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Sunday, 27 August 2017

Reviews: Adagio, Resistance, Droid (Reviews By Rich)

Adagio: Life (Scarlet Records)

French progressive/symphonic metallers return after an eight year absence and a number of line up changes with album number five Life. I'm not overly familiar with Adagio's previous work so have nothing to compare this album to but what we have with Life is an interesting mix of symphonic metal, melodic progressive metal and modern djent riffs. It's an unusual concoction and will have many melodic metal fans choking and foaming at the mouth but for the most part it seemingly works especially on heavier numbers such as Subrahmanya. There are some very fine symphonic parts scattered throughout the album with highlights being the epic opening title track and midway track Darkness Machine

Also special mention must go to the impressive vocals of frontman Kelly Sundown Carpenter (also of power metallers Civil War). What does let this album down is the seemingly average songwriting. You get tracks such as opener Life where there is so much going on that it seems like they put everything they had into that track and ran out of ideas for the rest of the album. A lot of the songs start off good before falling into mediocrity. This is not a terrible album by any means and is perfectly listenable but it's not going to maintain your interest throughout. 6/10

Resistance: Metal Machine (No Remorse Records)

American metallers Resistance return with their third album Metal Machine which is a mighty fine slab of US power metal. Resistance are yet another band that have slipped under my radar so I have not heard any of their previous works but judging on this one I think I may have to check out the back catalogue. This is very much old school US power metal (e.g. Metal Church, Vicious Rumors, Helstar etc.) but there is also a slight incorporation of the European power metal sound apparent as well. I can't help but hear a bit of Primal Fear in there somewhere. 

This is an album which is going to put a massive smile on the faces of old school metal fans the world round with opening title track The Metal Machine getting things off to a fine start with plenty of old school chunky riffage and the rough yet melodic vocals of frontman Robert Hett. Other songs which will get your pulse racing are Rise And Defend, Some Gave All and the impressive closing cover of Scorpion's Blackout. A massively enjoyable piece of old school US heavy metal that will have you raising your horns and banging your head. 8/10

Droid: Terrestrial Mutations (Nightbreaker Productions)

Terrestrial Mutations is the debut album by Canadian progressive thrashers Droid following on from their 2015 EP Disconnected. Since the rising popularity of Vektor there has been a bit of a resurgence of technical thrash metal and Droid very much fall into this category taking influence from Vektor and fellow countrymen (and progressive thrash legends) Voivod. The music on Terrestrial Mutations is overtly complex and technical thrash metal with a science fiction theme running throughout though far less frantic and intense than Vektor though and far more reminiscent of late 80's Voivod material.

The songs on the album range from more straight forward thrashers such as Suspended Animation and Cosmic Debit to longer more progressive numbers with long complex instrumentation such as Temptations Of Terminal Progress and Mission Drift. Terrestrial Mutations is far from an original sounding album with the aforementioned influences abundant throughout but the songwriting and playing throughout are to such a high standard that it is impossible to criticise for a lack of originality. If you like your thrash on the complex side then this is a must hear album. 8/10

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