|Review: Shadow Of Soul - The Hidden Memories|
|The Hidden Memories|
Year released: 2008
Genre: Progressive Metal
Review online: April 24, 2009
Reviewed by: Bruce Dragonchaser
for:The Hidden Memories
Italian Prog Metallers Shadow of Soul immediately have some leverage in this over-expectant business, because their new EP The Hidden Memories is possibly the only release I've heard in the genre of late that actually progresses. Led by vocalist Francesco Valente and completed by Rocco Spinoso on guitars, Carlo Capocasale on bass, and Andrea Iorfino behind the kit, Shadow of Soul formed back in 1998, and yet The Hidden Memories is only their second professional release after their forgotten 2001 debut Whisper From A Shadow. The band have truly treated us to a showcase of their endowment with five cranium-slapping prog workouts that take you down so many roads it seems impossible to find your way back.
Think a dark Vision Divine meets Shadow Gallery on a wintry night; they bump into early Iced Earth and latter period Emperor and an altercation ensues. The parting words would coalesce and form The Hidden Memories, a mysterious, moody collection of serpentine manifestos born of the Italian Prog-Power template but expanded upon by about 200ft of extreme wiring. The production is thick and murky, adding an almost Gothic vista to the band's cynical prose and syntax. "Evil Mother Nature" is perhaps the most chaotic track, throwing Valente's expansive vocals throughout the mix of frenetic percussion, harmony guitars and chilling keys. "Black Blood" is equally insane, with a great use of Black Metal drumming and neo-classical synth work. "Demon's Lullaby" is the darkest track to be found here, which also finds Valente using every aspect of his flexible vocal chords.
Things might be a tad on the frenzied side with the Prog/Power Metal elements sitting uncomfortably with the more extreme attributes, but Shadow of Soul are testing the water here, and it is very promising indeed.
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