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Twinspirts: The Forbidden City

Twinspirts: The Forbidden City

Progressive Metal
Rating: 4.5/5.0

Superlative keyboard player and composer Daniele Liverani returns with his Twinspirits project and The Forbidden City (also the second new release this month from Lion Music). Riding on the crest of 2007's extravagant and ambitiously titled The Music That Will Heal The World, The Forbidden City bursts forth with a heavier more dramatic progressive metal feel than its predecessor. Additionally, Twinspirits introduces a new vocalist Goran Nystrom whose range and projection add to the greater drama of the compositions.

As usual with Liverani, The Forbidden City is concept album with a lyrical content likely more complex than the progressive arrangements. Reducing the plot to an impossible simple notion, the story deals with the interaction of two different human natures, one weak and the other the stronger oppressor. Musically then, the arrangements reflect these two characters.

Taste the Infinity or My Future with there more uplifting and sweeping arrangements portray the weaker character's aspiration to rise above and overcome. The heavier and often crushing pieces, like Number One and Everything, show the oppressor confessing his near insane ambitions for power and control. Nystrom expertly gives accuracy to each character with this versatile range.

Obtuse as the concept may seem, the music transforms and displays the lyrical ideas quite well. But, of course, this is what we expect from progressive metal. Therefore, irregardless of the lyrical expressions, I found the music of The Forbidden City most compelling. For instance, Number One invokes all the glory of power metal but turns on the strength of a modern metal motif with striking chords and intense vocals. Everything has Liverani's greatest keyboard presence, yet is moved along by clear and brisk riff development. Conversely, My Future is pure neo-classical prog metal defined by an epic guitar solo. And the whole work is blessed by these unpretentious yet provocative arrangements.

The simple genius of progressive metal is the ability to mesh the versatility of musical elements in an engaging way. The Forbidden City succeeds eloquently. Highly recommended!

In Short

The simple genius of progressive metal is the ability to mesh the versatility of musical elements in an engaging way. The Forbidden City succeeds eloquently. Highly recommended!

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