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Halcyon Way - 'Conquer' http://rocktopia.co.uk/media/reviews/photos/thumbnail/200x200s/7e/a1/1b/Halcyon-Way-Conquer-64-1423335240.jpg Hot

Added by Central Electronic Brain     February 07, 2015    
 
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Halcyon Way have come of age and 'Conquer' deserves to do exactly that.

There are few bands truly adept at merging two distinct genres into one complete, cohesive sound. So when Atlanta's Halcyon Way began to prove as long ago as 2008's 'A Manifesto For Domination' that they could masterfully preside over elements of Progressive to Power, Thrash to Trad, Melodic Death to Modern, we knew the Metal world was going to have a band to savour. 'Building The Towers' constructed further upon that early promise, before 'Indoctrination' led us to the point of view that this band were the real deal. However it's the aptly titled 'Conquer' which should see this U.S. act finally go over the top and charge, full pelt into Metal glory; such is the power, majesty and diversity it displays.

Two aspects set the tone for every one of the twelve tracks on this album - melody and power, and whether vocalist Steve Braun (think James Labrie meeting a less exuberant Tony Harnell) is using layers of his aggressive yet seductively smooth voice to drive the songs along, or Jon Bodan using his grating gutturals to add further bite to already uncompromising compositions, neither puts a note or growl out of place.

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'Militant' is a prime example of where the pair combine to make a meatier mark than either could on their own, galloping drums and scything guitars interspersing a mix of throaty expulsions and soaring vocals of the highest calibre. Add in the less theatrical Queensryche vibe of 'Hatred Is My Cause', where Max Eve and Bodan trade riffs and solos with a poise that sets this band apart from the many twin-fretted hopefuls, or 'Web Of Lies' (and 'Every Second Counts' if you have the U.S. release with this bonus track), where it is the bass work from Skyler Moore and drum barrage courtesy of Mr Dexterity behind the kit, Ernie Topran, which raises this band far above the Progressive Power Metal which seems to clog the release schedules these days.

Halcyon Way have come of age and 'Conquer' deserves to do exactly that.

Steven Reid

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