Artist: Until Rain 
   Title: Anthem To Creation
   Label: Escape Music
 

Hailing from Thessaloniki, Greece, Until Rain are a Prog Metal band formed back in 2004, with a debut album and EP under their belts, the band now return in 2013 with their new opus 'Anthem To Creation'.

This album finds the band taking another leap forward from their debut 'The Reign Of Dreams' and their EP 'Pandemic' with this latest release, with a sound familiar to the likes DGM and Circus Maximus and at times Kamelot, the band of Yannis Papadopoulos – vocals, Theodore Amaxopoulos – guitars, Lefteris Germenlis – keyboards, Bill Gkagkavouzis – bass and Alex Hughes – drums, deliver a modern Prog Metal album that delivers in spades with its heavy driven bass and powerhouse drums, to the energetic and sometimes frantic guitars and mesmerizing keys.  This is Prog Metal for the new generation.

The album opens up with ‘Brain Death’, a powerful opening barrage that sets out the stall for the rest of the album.  The chunky bass and drums laying down the foundations for the sweeping guitars and keyboards, but it's Papadopoulos’s vocals that really make their mark, this guy has a great voice that really brings not just the opener ,but the entire to album to life, his range is phenomenal, from pitch to power this guy really delivers.

The power enthused metal of ‘Think Again’ gives Amaxopoulos a real chance to rip up the fret board, accompanied by another vocal triumph from Papadopoulos.  The pace and tempo show no signs of subsiding as the pace is indeed picked up a notch or two with the rip snorting ‘Living Hell’, with this one edging at times towards the Power Metal side of things.

There is a short lull in pace and tempo but never quality with the stunning ‘My Own Blood’, but this is just a lull as things quickly turn around again with the ten minute epic that is ‘Empty Helmet’.  This is where that DGM familiarity comes about and this theme is carried on well into the next track ’13-8’.

'The Clang Of Shields' is a two part piece, with part one kicking off with a big narrative before the track really kicks off with some big keyboards and a huge rhythm section, then the guitars kick in and it's all systems go from here on in.  This one build and builds in true Prog Metal style.  Part two has a more somber start with just piano and guitars leading this one before the guitars, bass and drums unite with the vocals for the crescendo of power.  Very much in the vein of some of the mellower Kamelot moments, which leads nicely into the 18 minutes 21 seconds of the title track ‘Anthem To Creation’, again continuing with that Kamelot feel.  This is 18 minutes of sheer Prog Metal bliss, this is one that truly defines the genre.

After the definitive title track the band still manage to keep the interest in the remaining tracks on focus, returning to the big bass lines courtesy of Gkagkavouzis for ‘Breaking The 7 Seals’, before the album closes out in fine style with excellent ‘Marionettes’.  A real mixed up arrangement that has that sort of jazz metal fusion that wraps up what is stunning release and one that is sure to stand the band in good stead for next years Prog Metal festivals.  Definitely a band on the rise.

Review by: Barry McMinn

 Tracklisting:

1. Brain Death
2. Think Again
3. Living Hell 
4. My Own Blood
5. Empty Helmet
6. 13-8
7. The Clang Of Sheilds Pt 1
8. The Clang Of Shields Pt II
9. Anthem To Creation
10. Breaking Of The 7 Seals
11. Marionettes

                  

 

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