Chaos Divine - The Human Connection review
|Album:||The Human Connection|
|Release date:||March 2011|
01. One Door
02. At The Ringing Of The Siren
03. The Beaten Path
04. Chasing Shadows
05. Beautiful Abyss
07. Invert Evolution
08. Astral Plane
09. No Road Home (Solastalgia)
This five-piece from Perth, Australia emerged as a fierce melodic death metal act with their debut album Avalon. Since then the band decided to take another direction with their music, toning down the death metal and throwing in progressive and atmospheric elements. While I found the debut to be lacking in songwriting and personality, The Human Connection is a completely different animal. The forward leap these guys have taken is massive.
The majority of the infectiously catchy melodies this album has to offer are centered around the vocalist David Anderton, who often reminds me of Vincent Cavanagh from Anathema with his emotional and technically solid singing. The atmosphere the guitar work creates matches remarkably well with the emotion of vocals, accompanied by some delicate keyboards and sampling. Guitarists have a nice style to make use of their elegance and wizardry here; take "Chasing Shadows" for example where the middle section builds up intensity all the way to Anderton's death screams, eventually climaxing to the refrain with an upbeat feel. While catchy guitar leads aren't in the spotlight all that much there's surely a fine place for them in the final track, the 12-minute mammoth that has a great old school prog rock feeling to it. The drumming arrangements are fairly solid as well and keep things rhythmically interesting most of the time.
Lyrical themes consist of loss, mental problems and eternity, among some other things. The lyrics aren't anything truly special for the most part but there's an odd moment of brilliance; "I am homesick while at home" is a great single line to describe what solastalgia is about.
Only slight dips in quality of songwriting prevent The Human Connection from being a really excellent album. Their style can be well recognized and with this kind of diversity it's hardly a total miss for any fan of softer progressive metal. Strongly recommended.
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