Symphony X
V: The New Mythology Suite


2.0
poor

Review

by Skishua71 USER (4 Reviews)
April 19th, 2009 | 11 replies


Release Date: 2000 | Tracklist

Review Summary: Symphony X experiment with a very power metal release that will leave all but fans of the genre running.

Masterpiece, perfect, brilliant, Symphony X's magnum opus, these were all things I was told about V: The New Mythology Suite before purchasing it. I debated about buying it for a while since iTunes didn't feature it and I didn't have any online music players at the time, but after all the positive feedback it received I decided to buy it.

Looking back I can safely say that this is not Symphony X's best, nor do any of the aforementioned adjectives fit this album. Maybe I was hoping for something less power metal esque or maybe I began to take my music too seriously, either way I found this album to be too cheesy for my taste.

Symphony X has always played a particular brand of power metal. They mixed progressive rock, neo-classical, and power metal together to create something different, something special that while not exactly the most unique, was always done correctly.

I say "was" intentionally. V is just not right somehow, the synths, cheesy background vocals, and poor lyrics all contribute to this. Many people will defend power metal saying that it is "epic", and while I do enjoy listening to those "epic" groups like Nightwish or Kamelot on occasion, I didn't exactly want Symphony X to start playing such symphonic power metal. Now I'm not trying to say that Symphony X should stop play symphonic arrangements (the fact that the group is named Symphony X is not lost on me) as they really can make it work on songs such as Oculus Ex Inferni; the problem I have here is that the album sounds pretentious. On the aforementioned song the orchestra and choir sound real, (I'm not sure if they used a real one on Paradise Lost actually) the song conjures up a phenomenal dark atmosphere that is actually believable. Unfortunately they do not sound believable here and take a lot away from how seriously you can take the music. The lyrics are another weak spot on the album. They are about a fantasy world or a story of some sort, Atlantis I believe it is. It's not exactly the worst power metal has to offer, but it definitely makes the album come off as fake.

Now while I found all these things very distracting and admittedly nearly laughable, the album is not a complete failure. One reason is that all of the members of the band are very technically proficient. Russell Allen has a very masculine, chesty voice, that can be as crisp and clear or extremely brutal. He uses the smooth voice here and while enjoyable, it makes the poor lyrics stand out. Romeo is a fantastic guitarist as everyone familiar with the band knows and his solos have a very ethereal quality here evidenced on Communion and the Oracle in particular. Jason Rullo also rejoined the band after his momentary absence on Twilight In Olympus and is a welcome addition to the band. Michael LePond, while not standing out, does put some solid playing into the album as usual.

Back to the lyrics that I have mentioned. Things like, "Here we are, children of sun and stars", or "Mocking the ways of justice, the serpent's dragon vultures ride storming the gates of seven, no mortal man shall break our stride." just don't sit right with me. I would recommend looking up the lyrics for some of these songs if you plan on buying this-if you can tolerate them maybe you will be won over by the excellent musicianship and soothing vocals.

So if you are a fan of symphonic power metal and don't mind cheesy lyrics, then maybe you should check this out. I wouldn't really recommend this to anyone except a power metal fanatic or extreme fan of the band. In the end I think that both The Divine Wings of Tragedy and Paradise Lost are better listens. Metal heads beware this album.


user ratings (558)
Chart.
4.2
excellent
other reviews of this album
Shattered_Future (4.5)
...



Comments:Add a Comment 
Skishua71
April 19th 2009


90 Comments

Album Rating: 2.0

I figured that I would give a different opinion of the album.

A7XEric
April 19th 2009


322 Comments

Album Rating: 3.5

You make it sound like lyrics are the only thing that matter or matter more than the actual musicianship or vocal ability of the singer, but honestly, Symphony X's lyrics have always been a little on the cheesy side anyways.



But I'd have to agree this album is really overrated. Most of my favorite parts of the album aren't even written by SX. They're old classical pieces intertwined into the music. It's good, but not the fap-worthy masterpiece that most fans say it is.This Message Edited On 04.19.09

jrowa001
April 19th 2009


8752 Comments

Album Rating: 5.0

yeah this album sucks

Spamue1G
April 19th 2009


1291 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

The lyrics (including the ones you mentioned in the review) really aren't bad, but I can see why you'd find them annoying. I did a bit at first, but I just got used to them and don't see much wrong with them anymore. The thing about the arrangements not sounding real... again, I felt the same at first. It's just grown on me.

The review has moments of excellent analysis, but you need to describe the overall sound of the album a fair bit more, not just offer a different opinion. I think you're one review away from an easy pos from me.

Skishua71
April 19th 2009


90 Comments

Album Rating: 2.0

Okay I will get around to editing this a bit tomorrow.



To AX7Eric-lyrics are something for me that never really mattered until about a year ago when I got into Pink Floyd. Now they just really affect how seriously I can take music. Musicianship and overall sound is very important still however.





Yazz_Flute
April 19th 2009


18938 Comments

Album Rating: 4.5

The lyrics don't bother me at all on this record. Part of why I love Symphony X so much is that they sing about cheesy topics without sounding so cheesy imo.

Skishua71
April 19th 2009


90 Comments

Album Rating: 2.0

Mmm, my first neg. I wonder if it was for poor writing or differentiating points of view.

Yazz_Flute
April 19th 2009


18938 Comments

Album Rating: 4.5

I didn't vote, but I thought the review was definitely well written. If anything the neg was because you made you pretty said that the only major downside of the album was it's cheesy lyrics. It's kinda hard to justify this as a two by only complaining about lyrics, as you praised the musicsianship for the most part.

Altmer
April 20th 2009


5700 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

it's power metal who cares about the lyrics

Shattered_Future
April 21st 2009


1558 Comments

Album Rating: 4.5

Fail.

Skishua71
April 21st 2009


90 Comments

Album Rating: 2.0

okay i cleaned the review up a little, hopefully that helps. This Message Edited On 04.29.09



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