Guilt Machine – On This Perfect Day (2009) – Review

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RockmusicRaider Review Guilt Machine Perfect Day - Album CoverThe album On This Perfect Day from Arjen Lucassen‘s Progressive Metal project Guilt Machine feels vaguely familiar to tunes heard in the past that are stored in my vast music collection in my brain. But similarity is actually more in concept, than in tune. Why? Because this here Long Island Ice Tea is much more complex than just simple tunes strung together. And it has the hallmarks of some modern Pink Floyd style production or something in this direction. Or at least this resembles what we got served back in time when they were all high on stuff. Psychedelic progressive rock at its best.

In all honesty, I was about to throw this out the window when first listening to On This Perfect Day. But then after making an effort to listen again, it dawned on me that I almost threw a gem away. SO, before you open the window yourself: Listen to this production first, suck it in and let it be digested in yer mighty stomach. Then, once it hath been filtered by thy brain – if there is one left after that treatement – then thou shalt judge. ‘Cause this début and currently only full length studio album On This Perfect Day is a massively heavy and complex stew that Guilt Machine serves you. With some onions and hot peppers on the side. [...]  Got hooked? Raid on...!

Stream of Passion – The Flame Within (2009) – Review

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RockmusicRaider Review Stream of Passion Flame Within - Album CoverHere is a band that improves with the past? Or should we say they decline as they move forward into the future? Well, first I reviewed Stream of Passion‘s newest album ‘A War of Our Own’ newest meaning 2014 – and not being impressed too much, turned in desperation to some older stuff they produced. And … BINGO! The band’s second studio album ‘The Flame Within’ really delivers a much better brand of Dutch Metal than I would have expected judging by their newest production.

The band recovered nicely, after having been treated somewhat shabbily by Arjen Lucassen, who left his project to Marcela Bovio and departed for shores unknown with two more original members. The lore and his website say that the departure was intended, but little mice are whispering that this is not quite exact. But then there is nothing to substantiate that to a credible degree, so let’s treat it as a rumor – for now. But just check out the lyrics of ‘The Leader’. Well, whatever it was, the band went ahead and produced ‘The Flame Within’, a real nice and juicy chunk of Symphonic Metal or Gothic Metal, depending which way you want to turn it.  [...]  Got hooked? Raid on...!

Epica – Design Your Universe (2009) – Review

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RockmusicRaider Review - Epica - Design Your Universe - Album CoverWell, is it better than the other records or is it not? After Consign to Oblivion I grew a bit wary of what I was going to find in this Pandora’s box that this band usually delivers. Much to my relief, Epica‘s fourth studio album Design Your Universe is probably one of the better records – previous and past. It kind of sounds like a mix between Delain, Within Temptation and Nightwish fueled by top quality vitamins. They actually quite shamelessly erred on the latter’s territory.

But seriously, this is probably one of the most authentic and complex albums this side of The Phantom Agony. Even if the cheese has grown exponentially in some of the tracks. And as is custom, Epica – or more their fearless leader Mark Jansen – have again chosen a difficult and almost scientific target of desire, which is how things connect together in sub-atomic way of thinking, no less. Oh my…! [...]  Got hooked? Raid on...!