Magellan - Symphony For A Misanthrope review


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Band: Magellan
Album: Symphony For A Misanthrope
Release date: April 2005

01. Symphonette
02. Why Water Weeds?
03. Wisdom
04. Cranium Reef Suit
    1 - Part 1: Youthful Enthusiasm
    2 - Part 2: Psych 101
    3 - Part 3: Primal Defense
05. Pianissimo Intermission
06. Doctor Concoctor
07. Every Bullet Needs Blood

When I for the first time came in contact with Magellan, on their latest album "Impossible Figures", I was a bit surprised.
At the time I wrote the review for it, I really liked the album, liked without having any other kinds of feelings for it. Today I just think the album is strange and a bit boring.
So my feelings before listening to this new piece from Magellan was a bit divided.
Sure, the artwork (that's just Superb) shows that the album probably has a darker meaning, and might not be as straggling as the last one.

Now that was true too, "Symphony for a Misanthrope" is a darker album and it's way much more compact and it's not turning around in so many different ways that "Impossible Figures" does, and by my meaning, this album is way much better too.
Magellan (probably named after the Portuguese (Spanish actually) sea captain, Fernando de Magellan) is the breed of the two Gardner brothers, Trent and Wayne, and they have been around for almost 15 years. "Symphony for a Misanthrope" is just their sixth full-length, and it might be among their best too.

On "Symphony for a Misanthrope" Magellan has a lot of famous names among their guests, Robert Berry (Emerson, Lake & Palmer), Joe Franco (Good Rats, Twisted Sister), Stephen Imbler, Steve Walsh (Kansas) and Dave Manion, that's not a bad list of guests, don't you think?
But in the end, the guests can't make the difference between a good or a bad album, there's a lot of other factors that has to work out too, and this time I really think Trent and Wayne has succeeded to put all of their ideas together in a great way, "Symphony for a Misanthrope" is much better than it's precursor and it's probably one of the best Progressive Rock/Metal albums that's released this year.

We're given seven new songs, among them two instrumental ones and one 18-minute (3 part) large epos named "Cranium Reef Suite".
But the song that caught the most of my attention is "Doctor Concoctor", that might be the heaviest I ever heard from Magellan. The heaviness this song evokes is amazing, and I truly wish that more of the songs could be in the same "school" as this one.
And the following "Every Bullet Needs Blood" is great; it's a bit faster (more Metal) piece with one of those special Magellan-catchy choruses.

Otherwise the material is strong and very even. There aren't any songs that really points out and no that's really bad. That together with the great production makes this album way my better than the latest.
And I strongly recommend the album for all fans of Magellan and progressive rock in general.
Here you have, maybe, the best progg-rock album of the year, make sure you'll buy your own copy by this legendary progg band's latest effort.

Check Out: "Doctor Concoctor", "Every Bullet Needs Blood" & "Wisdom".

Written by Malcolm | 23.07.2005



Comments: 1   Visited by: 6 users
02.06.2012 - 22:37
Account deleted
I haven't listened to this album yet but I intend to really soon.

One correction to something written in this review - Berry has never beeen in ELP but he did collaborate with Emerson and Palmer in a project called "3" (the album was called To The Power of Three) in 1988; it was a rather weak album, pop-ish, 80s sound, the mighty Keith Emerson was pretty uninspired if you ask me.

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