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Category: Albums

Sunburst – Manifesto

It’s hard to beat great vocals and stunningly dexterous guitar playing backed up by a solid rhythm section. There are no doubt reasons why they have only produced two albums in 14 years. I hope the next one will be released before too long. If it’s as good as “Manifesto,” it will be well worth waiting for.

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Ghost on Mars – Out of Time and Space

Well, what can I say? This is a stunner of a debut album. I can’t help thinking that these guys are perfect for festivals such as Progpower Europe. I would certainly welcome a chance to see them live. What have the Romans ever done for us? Need you ask? It goes without saying that I am looking forward very much to future works from them.

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Dialith – Alter

If you’re in the mood for some refreshing symphonic metal, go give “Alter” a try. Something tells me you won’t regret it.

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My Dying Bride – A Mortal Binding

Is the bride truly dying? In times of internal struggle, My Dying Bride releases its 14th full-length studio album. While it does not stand among the band’s major classics, it is a solid album that mostly deserves praise.

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Cypecore – Make me Real

This band probably should be better known, they have a cool image and an interesting concept, almost a brand. By all accounts their live shows are something to behold. Whether I get to witness that remains to be seen, maybe not. Regardless, there is a back catalogue to investigate and possible future episodes of Cypecore to look forward to.

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Dark Oath – Ages of Man

The fresh take on heavy orchestration in death metal is very exciting. They nailed an incredible sound and brought forth some fantastic melodies and epic moments.

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Illumishade – Another Side of You

Illumishade’s “Another Side of You” is the ultimate hybrid of genres, sounds and emotions not just because of how many puzzle pieces it puts together, but because of how beautiful and coherent the final picture is.

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Omnivide – A Tale of Fire

The mix of styles in the material on “A Tale of Fire” speaks volumes to me. Debut albums are always a great stepping stone for bands, and I hope this landmark moment will spur them on. I am sure they have plenty of ideas in their locker and I look forward to hearing more from them.

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Persefone – Lingua Ignota: Part I

They were always kings of odd time signatures, disrupted rhythmic songwriting and extreme technicality, so to see them scale down on these aspects was not something I was ready for. I was also afraid they’d just dilute their creativity to please a wider audience. But Persefone is as strong as it ever was, if not even stronger.

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Turbulence – B1nary Dream

We’re left with strong feelings of uplifting melancholia, if that makes any sense, triumphant, yet aware of the hardships and traumas endured on our journey so far. And that is the exact moment I know there’s no way around a perfect 10/10 for “Binary Dream”, because it’s nothing short of breathtaking, both on a technical and emotional level.

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Shadowpath – The Aeon Discordance

For me, this is a band that stands out from the crowd and “The Aeon Discordance” gets better with each listen. Their compositions are diverse and vibrant and have the ratio of ingredients that closely match my current musical taste. I hope this album will propel them to greater things and I look forward to hearing more from them.

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Borknagar – Fall

“Fall” is another solid addition to Borknagar’s impressive catalogue, as it’s built on a strong foundation of excellent songwriting and musicianship. If you’re a fan of progressive metal with a touch of the extreme, you really can’t go wrong with Borknagar.

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Big Big Train – The Likes of Us

I have discovered a band that I already knew about and had chosen not to investigate before. That was a mistake, oh well, you live and learn. I can’t promise to investigate all their back catalogue, but I now feel better equipped to enjoy the show later this year. Big Big Train seem to have a new lease of life and have the bit between their teeth. I think the future looks bright for them.

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North Sea Echoes – Really Good Terrible Things

If you are a fan of Fates Warning and/or Jim and Ray’s side projects, this is an unmissable addition for your collection. It should appeal to many people, and I would be surprised if this is the last of North Sea Echoes. There will surely be a demand for more.

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A Somerset Parade – Carcosa

It took me a few listens to appreciate the entirety of this album. It is creepy, angry, and melodic with a gothic concept to boot. The band isn’t afraid to experiment and have the capacity to do that. Who knows what will be in store for them, but I for one can’t wait to see what that is.

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Exocrine – Legend

This is another one of those bands that have passed me by until now. Legend is their fifth album in just under ten years. So not only is there a back catalogue to explore, but it shouldn’t be too long before album number six. Bring it on I say because the pros far outweigh the cons on this release, so it’s thumbs up from me.

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Vipassi – Lightless

The more I played the album, the less I found I could criticise. I wonder if there will be more from this band, I certainly hope so. I also hope I get the chance to see them live. I have stopped having a bucket list of bands to see, it is never going to be empty.

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Caligula’s Horse – Charcoal Grace

January is certainly serving up some sumptuous fruits, and this is another strong contender for my AOTY 2024. In these terrible times (was it not ever thus) where news is rarely good, releases such as this sustain me. They help to hold back pessimistic thoughts and long may it continue. The song writing is sublime, the execution flawless, and the urge to play the whole thing over again is inescapable.

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No Terror in the Bang – Heal

This genre changeling of a band with their kaleidoscope range of styles are a breath of fresh air. It is only 2 weeks into the new year, and I do believe I am looking at an early contender for my album of the year.

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ico-2 We’re a group of Prog-lovers who started a journey to share with you our thoughts about albums, concerts, tours and festivals, the photo galleries of the Prog concerts we visit, as well interviews with upcoming or established musicians or prog-related people. Follow our Facebook page for frequent updates and news around the Progniverse.

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