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Universal Mind Project: The Jaguar Priest
Universal Mind Project The Jaguar Priest CD Album Review

Universal Mind Project: The Jaguar Priest

Progressive Power Metal
2.0/5.0

I'll start with my conclusion first as it's simple. With their debut album The Jaguar Priest, Universal Mind Project plays some really terrific progressive power metal music, actually quite enjoyable, with a female lead singer. However, founder and guitarist Michael Alexander insists on including, in every song, his annoying and insipid death vocals and growls. These vocals basically sink every song and the entire album.

Universal Mind Project The Jaguar Priest Band Photo

Universal Mind Project

I say the death growls are in every song, but I don't know that for sure. In two attempts, I didn't get any farther than four or five songs. Yeah. I was that put off by Alexander's vocals. I'm also not sure of what purpose the vocals serve. Maybe, the "jaguar" side of the jaguar priest is growling like, well, a jaguar. Beats me. And at this point, I don't really care anymore. I will not be listening to this album again, and can't recommend it because of the death vocals. (Okay. Haters, get it out of your system and start hating me now. I don't care.)

But on the positive side, accomplished vocalist Elina Laivera has a pleasant voice, melodic and appealing. In the arrangements, there's an exceptional balance of instrumentation, notably between guitar and keyboards. Also, within the arrangements Alexander composes with an ear to harmony and melody that makes the music both appealing and engaging. Additionally, Alexander and company have some strong guest musicians helping them out, including such notables as Nils K Rue [Pagan's Mind], Mark Jansen [Epica, Mayan], Charlie Dominici [ex Dream Theater] and Diego Valdez [Helker]. And, finally, the album art work is quite impressive and attractive. In other words, UMP has a lot of good thing going for it, but the death growls aren't one of them. Fine progressive power metal music, shitty death vocals.

Universal Mind Project - The Force Of Our Creation


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In Short

With The Jaguar Priest, Universal Mind Project plays some really terrific progressive power metal music, which, unfortunately, gets a death blow from the annoying and insipid death vocals and growls in every song.

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