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Arryan Path - 'Terra Incognita' http://rocktopia.co.uk/media/reviews/photos/thumbnail/200x200s/04/a8/05/589_arryanpathterraincognita_1285008390.jpg Hot

Added by Central Electronic Brain     September 20, 2010    
 
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Hugely creditable release from the up and coming Pitch Black label.

An album of dramatic power metal with technical, progressive and Mediterranean/Middle Eastern flavourings that has the temerity to begin with a nine minute opus -‘Cassiopeia’- that simply fades at the end (why?) is always going to leave this listener bewildered and frustrated and with much to do to win me over. However, one of the great joys of being a reviewer is in receiving a CD that is an unexpected revelation in terms of tremendous music and performances revealed thereon. ‘Terra Incognita’ has provided one of those instances, and the failings of the opening track did not detract one iota from an overall appreciation of a high quality album.

The Cypriot band (named after a type of flower, incidentally) is not new to the recording studio but it is some six years since their debut appeared. Led by brothers Nicholas and Socrates Leptos (vocals and guitars respectively), the band has produced an album with a fabulous sound and mix, courtesy of former Sanvoisen vocalist Vagelis Maranis’ and his studio in Germany and the guy himself has contributed vocals to ‘Cassiopeia’ and some bass and guitars elsewhere.

Lyrically, the band focuses upon mysticism, mythology, distant lands and battles. ‘Molon Lave’ about ‘the 300’ is lyrically and musically very much in Sabaton territory and is indeed the subject matter of the title track of that band’s latest offering ‘Coat Of Arms’. Originality in the power metal genre is generally lacking so the sprinkling of ethnic flavourings, as on the title track is a welcome ingredient. ‘Open Season’ is a delightful heavy and bombastic contrast to this, while the eastern mysticism of the excellent ‘Ishtar’ adds further variety. ‘…Blood…’ is supremely melodic with a great chorus, while ‘Elegy’ is another strong song and emphasises the clear and powerful vocals evident throughout the album. ‘Angel…’ is a concise and frantic number, whilst ‘Minas Tirith’ is a complex song featuring another of those marvellous choruses. Album closer ‘The Mind’ written by original drummer Clement Fung – and also featuring him - proves to be a more straightforward song than anything else here, but is a more than worthy inclusion.
‘Terra Incognita’ is a hugely creditable release from the up and coming Pitch Black label and Arryan Path’s album will hopefully find its way into the collections of many power metal fans. A great discovery!

Paul Jerome Smith

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