Review Summary: The band has a lot of potential but fail to produce a captivating and enjoyable record.
When I listen to bands like Andromeda, I begin to wonder how thin the line between pop and metal really is. The only difference seems like the sound of the music because eventually the way it is conveyed is almost the same. That is not to say it is a bad thing, but then it makes us question whether metal and pop music are really two distinct personalities. Is the only difference between this and pop music the fact that the former play in a band setting with guitarists?
On this record Andromeda sound like the amalgamation of Dream Theater and Pain of Salvation for it includes both: catchy (some), technical guitar riffs and the Daniel Gildenlow touch of vocal melodies. But that is not to say it is a bad thing. Okay, who am I kidding? This music is ordinary, unoriginal and boring. Sure, the instrumentation is skilled as always and they’ve improved on their songwriting but that seems to have taken them nowhere because eventually they’ve managed to create the least captivating progressive metal record I've heard.
David Fremburg does a horrible job at creating vocal melodies even though he sounds like a talented singer. All of the songs he sings are average at best and his vocals are what make this album not worth more than one listen. The worst part is it clocks in at about an hour and 7 minutes and by the end of it you’ll just be left wishing for it to end as soon as possible (and probably even end it if you’re capable of that).
The lyrics that he writes for the songs are also more or less laughable. A quote from The Hidden Riddle
“Well I've been told
That no other one will understand
Nor solve the hidden riddle
Yes I've been told
That no other one than the chosen son
Will solve the hidden riddle”
…What the fvck? How could he possibly believe that anyone would give a *** about some sort of hidden riddle? I tried looking for a storyline between the songs and attempted to think of this as some sort of symbolic hidden meaning but it really it sounds like a joke even when you hear him sing it. The song structure is also quite lame and hardly progressive, consisting of 3 repetitions of the chorus with slightly different lyrics each time.
Don’t get me wrong though, this album is not completely worthless. It does have its moments such as a nicely executed melodious guitar solo in the song No Guidelines
and the crushing guitar riffs in the last song Blink of an Eye
which also happens to have a better vocal performance than the other songs. The keyboard outro to the song is also very well composed but they manage to kill this song as well with unnecessary technicality and mindless shredding.
Overall, this is a very poorly executed album that lacks inspiration and creativity. You might like this if you like Dream Theater and PoS but if you have a more, ahem, "elite" music taste then you might like to give this up for more enjoyable and meaningful CD spins.