Artist:   Status Minor
   Title:  Ouroboros
   Label: Lion Music  
 

It's been some four years since their debut release 'Dialog', but Finnish Prog Metallers Status Minor return with the much-anticipated second album 'Ouroboros'.

Once again we see founding member Sami Saarinen return with Markku Kuikka, Jukka Karinen Eero Pakkanen and Rolf Pilve, as they takes up on journey through their latest concept album as they touch on the cycle of love and relationships, from the beginnings when couples meet and fall in love, then out of love and finally the separation.

The journey begins with ‘The Wind’, where all relationships start out and from the off you feel that the band have taken a more heavier approach with added orchestrations.  A bigger bass sound and more power infused drums, resulting in an altogether stronger work.

The story continues with ‘Hollow’, again a big bass presence and a sold drum foundation get this one underway before the rampaging guitars kick in and finally the might pipes of Markku Kuikka bring everything together to complete a heady Progressive feel to the track.  This is far from hollow, this is Prog Metal at its fullest.

The majestic tones of ‘Glass Wall’ take things to another level as more keyboards enter the proceedings along with some soaring guitars courtesy of Saarinen.  It's not until ‘Like A Dream’ that we are introduced to the voice of love itself in the form of Eluveitie’s Anna Murphy.  This is where the tempo eases off and Murphy brings an air of sophistication to the piece as she duets with Kuikka on this wonderful ballad.

We are midway through the album and now we get to the fallout as the dark tones of ‘Confidence and Truth’ come forth.  This time Murphy brings a haunting tone as the first signs of love becoming undone rears its ugly head.  This leads us nicely into the powerful and heavier ‘Stain’, on which Murphy duets with Kuikka to great effect.

The heavy tones continue with ‘Smile’, another thunderous assault from Pakkanen bass and Pilve’s drums.  Definitely the heaviest track on the album so far.

‘Flowers Die’ is another gentle piece that depicts the final falls of loves dream the decision to call it day before the separation depicted in the ten minute plus epic ‘Sail Away’ this ends a truly stunning album where some concept album deal with fantasy, other worlds and the like this album deals with real emotions it may not be the norm but Status Minor show again that they aren’t  your average Progressive Metal band they deal with real life. Definitely one of the Prog Metal albums of the year, wonderfully constructed. 

Review by: Barry McMinn 

Tracklisting:

1. The Wind
2. Hollow
3. Glass Wall
4. Like A Dream
5. Confidence And Trust
6. Stain
7. Smile
8. Flowers Die
9. Sail Away  

                    

 

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