Review Summary: Ne Obliviscaris ensure you Forget Not this masterpeice, a truly astounding album that all metal/prog lovers should own. And if you don't have it, why don't you?
Ahh, Progressive Metal. With bands like Opeth and Dream Theater you'd think we'd have found one of the most innovative genres, and possibly one of the most accessible since it can appeal to literally anybody.
Opeth reinforced the Extreme Side of the Prog genre. While Dream Theater kept it simple prog metal.
But now, it is as if somebody was given Opeth's torchlight, some band nobody would know of were it not due to the glorious invention known as the internet.
Ne Obliviscaris, a latin term for "Lest We Forget" which is one of the best names for a band I have come across of late, are a recent virtually remote newcomer to the Extreme Prog scene. I was skeptical at first, thinking it was going to be an Opeth clone. But oh, no how wrong could I possibly get.
This album... quite simply to quote the cliche track naming term. IS a Kaleidoscope of Epic. There is no denying it.
The band's songs almost all exceed 10 minutes in length, not uncommon of a prog band. And they really don't get boring. If this album were ever called boring, I'm sure the offender would need to be crucified on the spot. While I appreciate everybody having a different musical taste, that's just ridiculous. Violins and Metal should just be together, that is all I can say after hearing this band.
Okay, so to the album.
The first song, a black metal anthem "Tapestry Of The Starless Abstract" assaults our ears with an array of high-screams and blast beats. Fast riffing and amazing consistency, think that's all? No, they have this tiny tiny violin playing in there somewhere, then you get hit by everything. The entire band assault your senses with one of the most beautiful prog breakdowns ever to grace this earth.
This continues to the next track, "Xenoflux". An equally engaging track that starts out heavy, and disintegrates into a soft ambient, almost funk-like beat that suddenly comes back to tear the skin off your face with an equally heavy ending. Accompanied by amazing vocal-work depending on your view of how "vocals should be done".
"Of The Leper Butterflies" and "Forget Not" continue with the beauty, the former being a short and sweet journey into a bitter paradise. The latter a 12 minute epic that seems at times to just go on forever, and never stops feeding you this musical passion fruit. It's just beautifully done, the violinist and clean vocalist does both his fields extremely well. He never makes any mistakes I can point out on here, and all he does is just make me need an extra pack of tissues.
"And Plague Flowers The Kaleidoscope" is my favourite, the first track I heard and the track to cause me to fall in love with this amazing ensemble. It starts with an italian like festival sound, and it just works so well that I'm quite content to listen to it again and again for two straight hours (which is what I did when I first heard it, me and this track were inseparable) and then transitions into a glorious Doom-metal esque sound that casts the illusion of a burning forest, flowers flying around and leaving trails of flame to circle you. From then on, all you see is gradually shifting ashes, and a new flowerbed grows. That is this song ladies and gentlemen, and I hope you imagine it that way from now on.
The last two tracks are just as astounding, "Icicles Fall" is an almost entirely clean-sung masterpiece that draws upon the Violinists vocal talents like no other song. He really can sing this man, and I wish I could hire him to sing for me every day. Then maybe human contact wouldn't be so dismal.
Finally, we reach the final track.
"Of Petrichor Weaves Black Noise" a track that has some damn beautiful imagery associated, and the vocal work just leaves me speechless. It's a crying shame that it only goes on for 10 minutes because I would listen to it even if it lasted a blood hour! Hell, everything on this entire album leaves me speechless, there are just no faults I can see. Though the only fault I can say is that I would also love an instrumental version of this album, because it would leave me room to practice or just admire the beauty of the music.
To sum this up, the album makes me die inside about how useless I am in comparison to this amazing ensemble. But it also gives me hope that there are more than just 2 (or maybe 3 if you count Tool, who are also great) good prog bands.
Ne Obliviscaris ensure you Forget Not this masterpeice, a truly astounding album that all metal/prog lovers should own. And if you don't have it, why don't you?