Offering another slice of ambitious progressive metal is Aeon Zen with their third long player, Enigma. A project begun by composer and guitarist Rich Hinks has developed into a full band since the sophomore release The Face of the Unknown. While in the past Hinks had a host of guest vocalist on the previous albums, and some on this one, Aeon Zen now has a lead vocalist in Andi Kravljaca, who has a smooth melodic metal style. The guest vocalists on Enigma are Nate Loosemore (Lost In Thought), Atle Pettersen (Above Symmetry) and Jonny Tatum (Eumeria).
There's nothing enigmatic about Aeon Zen's stylish progressive metal. The band continues to blend both classic progressive rock and metal in a melodic and technical, though not grossly inaccessible, in a premium package. Still Human, Seven Hills, and Warning are only several songs that display the effortless intrigue and playfulness of the band in both arrangement and musicianship.
What is enigmatic is the lyrical concept and certain vocal arrangements used by Aeon Zen in a few songs. To the former, Enigma is said to be a concept album, but I have no information concerning the specifics. To the latter, Aeon Zen has some vocalist doing death vocals within Divinity and in the latter third of Eternal Snow. Both are brilliant songs, only made annoying by these additions. Perhaps the inclusion has something to do with the concept. Thankfully, these vocals are minimal; unfortunately, they make a nearly perfect album less so.
Nevertheless, despite this caveat, Enigma is another terrific accomplishment from Aeon Zen, highly intriguing and very entertaining.
Enigma is another terrific accomplishment from Aeon Zen, highly intriguing and very entertaining progressive metal, despite a minimal inclusion of annoying death vocals.
Mat Sinner is both an icon and legend in the German, and the larger European, hard rock and heavy metal scene. Cranking out music since 1982, Sinner is an industrious and prolific musician and producer whether through his namesake band, the heavy metal heroes Primal ... [ Read More ]