Shadows Past was formed in the middle of the last decade by former Insania singer Ola Halen and guitarist Jonatan Berg. Halen used the Shadows Past moniker for his previous solo work where he played much of the instruments aside from the vocals. Counting releases and a demo, Perfect Chapter would be his sixth release.
Shadows Past:: Wherever I Go (Official Video).
The strengths of this album are self-evident as is its greatest weakness. To the former, fundamentally, Perfect Chapter works from the foundation of melodic heavy metal, but bumps up the heaviness with power metal with a strong thrash feel. The first cut, Wherever I Go, is prime example (watch the video at right).
Side by side with this intensity is some subtle, yet tasty, progressive metal nuances which adds intrigue. An Old Enemy, Impressed, and the closer Believe suggest some more clever arrangements. Also as a noteworthy texture, and surprise, is the abundance of synth solos throughout the album. This feature softens many arrangements, taking the edge off the thrashy heaviness. These things are the strengths of Perfect Chapter.
The flaw in the album falls on the shoulders of vocalist Ola Halen. Normally, a capable, even exceptional, vocalist, Halen has chosen to incorporate dirty/death vocals in nearly every song. It's quite annoying; annoying enough that by the seventh song I was fast-forwarding to get to the end of the album as I simply tired of this vocal addition. Whether Halen was trying to show his metal range or simply ride the current commercial trend of including harsh and death vocals in metal, I can't speak to the reason. Where included the death vocals adds nothing truly positive, or essential, to the arrangement.
Therefore, musically speaking, excepting the death vocals, Perfect Chapter offers some interesting and entertaining heavier melodic power metal with some graceful prog metal moments.
Musically speaking, excepting the death vocals, Perfect Chapter offers some interesting and entertaining heavier melodic power metal with some graceful prog metal moments.
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 ]