Space Odyssey – Embrace The Galaxy

Spread the metal:

Reviewed: January 2003
Released: 2003, Regain Records
Rating: 4.0/5
Reviewer: Anders Sandvall

The world famous keyboardist Richard Andersson (ex Majestic and now Time Requiem) is now trying his wings on his own with this solo record. Besides composing all of the music he’s also produced the album with some help by Jonas Reingold (The Flower Kings) and they’ve also mixed it together. The album was recorded in Jonas own studio Reingold Studio and Richards studio in Malmö, Sweden, during November/December -02. There’s nothing wrong with the production besides that the sound is thin and weak if you compare with Richards last effort with Time Requiem that’s also produced but not mixed in Reingold Studio, instead it was mixed in Studio Fredman. Reingold Studio lacks enough mixing equipment to make the album justice, that’s why I think that the sound is a bit weak and thin. Along with him he has brought a bunch of experienced (and not experienced) musicians like the drummer from The Flower Kings Zoltan and the bassist Marcel known from working with Yngwie Malmsteen and Talisman etc. And for the first time playing on an album we have Richards childhood friend Magnus on guitar and a new star with an amazing voice Patrik on lead vocals.

There are nine tracks on the album included two instrumental tracks. Richard is well known for his neo classical metal but on this album he has chosen to change a bit in his musical direction so on this album the music can best be describe as very melodic/classical heavy metal with some elements of neo classic metal. Richards music is very hard to play with a lot of tempo changes in every song, but this time the music is not so difficult as usual. On this album the focus is not so much set on Richard as it is on his previous albums but now it’s set on the other guys as well.

“DESPAIR AND PAIN” keyboard intro before Patrik and the rest of the band joins in. Classic heavy metal influenced by neo classic metal in the sound picture. Patrik is way up in the mix. Very impressing guitar solo at the end and the tempo is really high. “EMBRACE THE GALAXY” starts with a very long intro with just Magnus before the song starts off. Very nice drum play by Zoltan and Patrik really shows what a great voice and what a broad vocal range his got here. This song is a bit slower than the first one. This is more melodic heavy metal with strong choirs that backs up Patrik. Patriks voice resembles with the icon Ronnie James Dio is striking. “EMPOSIUM” a lot of keyboard in the intro, melodic heavy metal, the speed is not so high here. Patrik/Richard high up in the sound picture. The speed slows down a bit on parts of the song. In this song Magnus really shows off what a great guitarist he is. “ENTERING THE DOME” this sounds like a typical Richard-song, it could easily have fitted in on the debut with Time Requiem. Its neo classical metal with a numerous amount of both rhythm and tempo changes through the song. Both Magnus and Richard show their skills, Marcel and Zoltan just tags along. “THE HOUSE WITH THE HUNDRED WINDOWS” and “A PERFECT DAY” shows that Richards really likes to write instrumental songs. These two songs sound like they are taken from a movie soundtrack. Richard and Magnus have a big part in the sound picture. “GRAND OPENING” again its classic heavy metal with a lot of tempo on everyone and Magnus does some really nice guitar play, Richard shows what an incredible speed he can play in. “REQUIEM FOR A DREAM” sounds a lot like Time Requiem in the intro with a lot of Richards keyboard play. It’s a heavy up tempo ballad. Patrik and Richard high up in the mix with the other guys are toned down. This has a potential to be a big hit. A very nice guitar solo by Magnus. “SEDUCTION OF LIFE” neo classic metal in the intro before it turns into some more melodic heavy metal, Patrik has a lot of help in the chorus. Magnus does a fast guitar solo that goes straight into Richards keyboard solo.

This is a really strong solo album by Richard. All of the songs are of a very high standard and there’s no bad song at all. The only minor thing is the production and the mixing that’s weak and thin. The cover and the booklet reflect the music very well. Richard has done a really good job and this is definitely something to check out.

Right now Richard is working on a live album with Time Requiem taken from their gigs in Japan earlier this year.


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Track Listing:
Despair And Pain
Embrace The Galaxy
Entering The Dome
The House With A Hundred Windows
Grand Opening
Requiem For A Dream
Seduction Of Life
A Perfect Day

Richard Andersson – Keyboard
Magnus Nilsson – Guitar
Zoltan Csörsz – Drums
Patrik Johansson – Lead Vocals
Marcel Jacob – Bass