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Spheric Universe Experience
The New Eve
Released: 2012, Nightmare Records
France’s Spheric Universe Experience has been very in their decade of existence. In a genre (prog-metal) that often sees huge gaps between albums, the band has managed to release three high-quality albums since 2006 without ever repeating themselves or sounding stale. Quite an accomplishment. THE NEW EVE represents the next step forward for the band, and is perhaps their greatest triumph yet.
The band’s base of Dream Theater-inspired prog is still intact, but they’ve managed to stretch their musical wings, incorporating power metal, hints of thrash, and even hard rock to come up with a frankly powerful concoction of songs that, while not epic in length, are certainly epic-sounding. The riffs are still undoubtedly prog-based, but there is a straightforwardness to the songs now that makes THE NEW EVE one of the most instantaneously effective prog-metal albums I’ve ever heard. Take crunchy opener “Shut Up” or the roaring “In This Place” as examples: these songs will grab you right away and you’ll still remember them weeks later. What I’m saying is that the band has written their most memorable set of songs ever.
As for the band, Frank Garcia’s vocals are as strong as ever, and he’s added a more aggressive attitude to his singing that really befits some of the heavier songs (i.e. “Self Abuse”). While I would have liked to hear more of John Drai’ bass (he’s a bit buried in the mix), Vince Benaim and Fred Columbo continue to prove themselves wizard-like on guitars and keyboards respectively. However, the band member that stands out the most is drummer Christophe Briand. He joined the band one album ago (UNREAL), but I didn’t really notice him. For this album he’s really gone all out and his drums sound absolutely MASSIVE. His masterful performance is impressive indeed.
THE NEW EVE is aptly titled as it’s a significant step forward for Spheric Universe Experience. Prog-metal fans definitely need to check this album out – it’s a highlight for 2012 for sure.
1. Shut Up
2. The New Eve
4. Never Heal
6. The Day I Died
7. In This Place
8. Self Abuse
9. My Heart on the Cross
Frank Garcia: Vocals
Vince Benaim: Guitar
Fred Columbo: Keyboards
John Drai: Bass
Christophe Briand: Drums
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