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Elysium Theory - 'Event Horizon' http://rocktopia.co.uk/media/reviews/photos/thumbnail/200x200s/39/bd/25/elysium-theory-event-horizon-78-1373390840.jpg Hot

Added by Central Electronic Brain     July 09, 2013    
 
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Impressive musical prowess revealed within a restrained but melodic palette.

This is the upstate New York-based progressive rock quintet's second release, their 2010 debut garnering such diverse appraisals as "nothing more than an interesting demo" through to "tight musicianship, well thought out songs, strong vocals, and plenty of melody...the album walks that fine line between progressive rock and progressive metal, making it a release that both camps can easily enjoy".

So, to 'Event Horizon' which is a conceptual album that finds the band exploring diverse matters including religion, prophecy, science and extra terrestrials, while its culmination is the four-part, 17 minute epic 'Cask Of Amontillado' based upon a short story by Edgar Alan Poe. Throughout its 64 minute duration there is impressive musical prowess revealed within a restrained but melodic palette. There are few individual solos to be heard, but when they unexpectedly arrive I did feel they gave necessary additional colour to the proceedings, which otherwise tend to be rather technical: perhaps a little too much so at times.

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A brief, brooding, instrumental gets the album underway while layered progressive stylings during the fourteen minutes of the following two tracks ('Long Count' and 'Clockwork Earth) provide a fair indication of what one can expect for the remainder of the album: that is, with the exception of 'Church Of The Serpent' which seems out of kilter with the rest of the material with its swampy blues character and including an unexpected organ solo!

The album's highlight is undoubtedly the 'Cask...' epic, introduced by a short narration. There is a maelstrom of fascinating and fluid musical ideas to be discovered here, along with some of Daniel Peterson's most dramatic vocals, while the bombastic conclusion is a revelation!

Now, I'm afraid it's not all good news. The overall musical style presented here needs a really strong production to bring out the best of the musical light and shade. Unfortunately, for the most part, it so badly needs a kick up the proverbial and much more "umph" to take 'Event Horizon' from merely being good to being great. Sorry, but I also feel that many of Peterson's vocal contributions are pretty much devoid of real passion and emotive phrasing, and perhaps his range is insufficient for this style of music...

Nevertheless, this is a valiant effort and I am convinced that Elysium Theory will create a masterpiece one day.

Paul Jerome Smith

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