Wilderun – Veil Of Imagination Review

Score9.5/10
GenreProgressive Folk Metal
CountryUSA (Boston)
Runtime01:06:12
Release Date1 November 2019
Record LabelIndependent

Not many bands can pull off an exceptional atmospheric album so, when one does, it always gets me excited about it. One of the few (and latest) this year to accomplish such a feat are Boston’s Wilderun with their third album, Veil of Imagination. It expertly conjures deep feelings like wonder, determination, aggression, hate, fear, reflection, and everything in between. With rich orchestrations supporting it, Veil of Imagination is as colourful as its album cover would have you believe.

One of the amazing things about Veils of Imagination is how it hangs between so many genres yet doesn’t quite fit definitively into any of them. This album has been the topic of a few of my conversations lately, and everyone I talk to has a different take on what they’d consider it as. Personally, I think it fits well enough under the banner of “progressive folk”, but friends of mine have fought me on this, instead calling it things like “epic progressive death”, “progressive symphonic”, or even “atmospheric death”. The thing I find fascinating isn’t the label itself (I hardly ever get hung up on metal subgenres because they’re not absolute), it’s the fact that everyone I’ve talked to seems to have had a different experience with the album, driving them to pick out different defining characteristics about it.

The truth is, there is no right and wrong, especially when it comes to Veils of Imagination. It’ll be flowing with a light, carefree melody over bright orchestrations or acoustic guitar one second then it’ll explode into insanely harsh blast beats and gutteral vocals the next. There’s a steady, haunting undertone to the album, but it’s more apparent at some times than others.

If there’s one downside to the album, it’s that it only really works if you listen to it all at once. Each song is dynamic and holds it own, sure, but to get that special, full impact, listening to the entire thing is a necessity.

So, if you want to hear one of the best metal albums of the entire year, make damn sure to give Veil of Imagination a spin. This is my first experience with Wilderun but, after this, I’m ready to dive into their previous work.

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Noveria Release New Single

Italy’s power prog outfit Noveria have released an energetic new track, ‘Broken’, taken from their upcoming third album.

Based on how sick the solo section is, I’m super excited to listen to the album! Aequilibrium will be released on 25 October under Scarlet Records.

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Centurion – Centurion Review

Score8.5/10
GenreProgressive Heavy Metal
CountrySerbia
Runtime01:16:16
Release Date13 September 2019
Record LabelIndependent

Labelling a band as “progressive heavy metal” is usually, in my experience, just a desperate effort of a prog band that has low production quality to appear more legitimate. Fortunately, that isn’t the case in Centurion’s self-titled debut. Instead, we get a solid traditional metal experience with all the flare, technicality, and versatility of a prog album. Right off the top, these Serbs prove that they aren’t just another lo-fi prog outfit by making an actual decent introductory track.

After a tasteful build in intensity, one thing becomes clear: Centurion is an insatiable riff-beast, ready to prey on the ears of all who are close enough to listen. Not only that, but we’re also attacked with an onslaught of powerful melodies, facemelting solos (especially in ‘Ruka Sudbine’ and ‘Virtuelno Ognjiste’. Holy fuck.), and drumming that never settles for satisfactory. Seriously. This is one damn impressive group of musicians who are as mighty as the badass warriors on their album cover.

If there’s one area that Centurion slightly suffers in, it’s the vocal department. While they certainly aren’t bad, there are a couple areas (mainly some the verses) where a bit more expression would go a long way. That being said, vocalist Miloš Marjanović has a great range and I don’t think there’s a single chorus I didn’t love. Aside from this, the runtime (which clocks in at more than 75 minutes) could be trimmed down a bit but, all things considered, these aren’t huge issues.

On the flip side, such a long runtime allows for a lot of potential variety, which we certainly get. There’s a good range of highs and lows, as well as tons of songs that have your usual prog changes, namely ‘Hodocasnik’ and the Mediterranean-flavoured ‘Janjicar’ (and, if we’re being completely honest here, every other song, too). There’s not a moment where I felt the transitions were bad, either, so bonus points there.

If you had no idea of these guys’s existence, like me about a month ago, then you owe it to yourself to check this album out. If you like your metal heavy, gritty, melodic, and dynamic, Centurion is right up your alley.

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Induction Announce Debut

New progressive power metal outfit Induction have finally announced their debut album. The band was formed by guitarist Martin Beck and features Tim Hansen, son of the famed Kai Hansen (who is/has been guitarist/vocalist of Gamma Ray, Helloween, and Iron Savior).

Induction will be released on 18 October. No single has been revealed yet, but we can expect something epic, symphonic, and energetic.

01. A Message in Sand
02. By the Time
03. Pay the Price
04. The Outwitted Consecration (re-release)
05. Hiraeth
06. Mirror Make Believe (My Enemy) feat Kai Hansen
07. At the Bottom
08. The Riddle
09. A Nightmare’s Dream
10. My Verdict
11 Sorrow’s Lullaby

To accompany the album’s release, Induction will also be touring their new album in support of Armored Dawn.
12.11. München / Kranhalle
13.11. Milano / Legend
16.11. Essen / Zeche Carl
18.11. Köln / MTC
19.11. Hamburg / Logo
21.11. Aschaffenburg / Colos-Saal

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News This Week (February Week 3)

Tons of new metal surfaced this week, including albums by two huge names and a full load of new singles and EPs. There were already a lot of contenders for the top albums of the month, but Jesus Christ did this week ever make my job a hell of a lot harder.

Anyway, here’s your metal update for the week.

Singles and EPs

Mötley Crüe – The Dirt (Est. 1981) (feat. Machine Gun Kelly)

These metal legends have been around for a long fucking time and their lineup has been mostly consistent since their founding. From the upcoming biopic The Dirt (22 March), ‘The Dirt’ is classic Crüe.

Iron Savior – Kill Or Get Killed

My anticipation for this album only grows with each new single we get. It’s fast, heavy, and the solo is absolutely killer. Plus, that dramatic reading in the middle had me just as uneasy as the band!

Iron Savior – Kill Or Get Killed (AFM)

Darkwater – In Front Of You

As I’ve already heard Darkwater’s Human (it’s out 1 March, but you can see the review here), I almost didn’t catch this one. It’s a great prog track (not the best on the album, though) that sums up the album as a whole quite nicely.

Darkwater – In Front Of You (Ulterium)

Frozen Crown – Neverending

Power outfit Frozen Crown’s second record Crowned in Fost (great name, isn’t it?) is set to come out 22 March. Judging by this new single, it’ll contain a similar sound as their debut album, which is fine by me. This is a great new group and you should definitely check out their material if you haven’t before!

Frozen Crown – Neverending (Scarlet)

Norvhar – Kauna EP

Relatively new as far as real releases go, folk metal group Norvhar’s first EP is exceptional. The vocals are rough but the instrumentals are fairly lighthearted and the overall sound is far from being gloomy, with the exception of the ten minute ‘Fields of Fate’, which varies quite a bit.

The musicianship and songwriting are very good, and there’s a lot of variety packed into its seven tracks.

Norvhar – Fest In Midgard

Delain – Hunter’s Moon EP

Delain came out with a new EP on Friday, which features four new tracks, as well as ten live songs and (if you got the physical copy), some Blu-Ray content as well.

I only cared to listen to the new ones, because I’ve heard the other songs already. They’re pretty good; they’re poppy, with some symphonic epicness sprinkled throughout, and Charlotte Wessels’ chops are as beautiful as ever.

Delain – Masters Of Destiny (Napalm)

Albums

Rhapsody of Fire – The Eighth Mountain

Rhapsody is back with an album that makes up for their last few colossal disappointments in The Eighth Mountain. It’s back to its former epic, uplifting glory, and the band displays nothing but skill.

You can read more about the medieval madness here!

Rhapsody – The Legend Goes On (AFM)

Mortanius – Till Death Do Us Part

Mortanius’ debut album is wonderful. Its lively symphonic foundation and exuberant tenor vocals make it a very interesting listen. To describe it in a few words, it’s symphonic power metal with a medium-heavy prog influence, as well vocal harmonies and harpsichord that give it a vampirey feel. Make sense? Probably not. Go check out the review and listen to it yourself. You’ll get it.

Mortanius – Facing The Truth (Rockshots)

Vanir – Allfather

I don’t often listen to music that comes close to melodic death metal unless I really like it. Examples of exceptions would be Exmortus and Brymir, where the power elements are strong enough that I don’t mind the more extreme sound. Vanir falls under a similar category for me. It’s harsh and rough, but it’s relatively melodic and never too messy. It’s viking metal done extremely well.

Vanir – Fejd (Mighty Music)

Dream Theater – Distance over Time

Distance over Time is the beast Dream Theater record since 2009 as well as one of the best overall. It’s got a few more unique songs, such as ‘Viper King’ (below), and the songwriting strikes a perfect balance between proggy timechanges and more conventional beats, with phenomenal instrumentation that lifts the album to great heights.

Read more about it here.

Dream Theater – Viper King (InsideOut)

Sylvania – Testigos de las Estrellas

Sylvania’s Spanish roots are impossible to miss in Testigos de las Estrellas. The dual vocals (and many guest vocals) add a unique sound to its already impressive power metal prowess. Despite its less-than-perfect mixing, this album is stellar and should be given a listen.

Check out the full review.

Sylvania – Sangre Sudor y Lagrimas (Rock-CD)

Other News

A handful of good heavy and classic metal albums also came out this week, but I don’t want to make this article much longer, so there’ll be a separate post for that.

We’ll finish off with Sabaton History Channel’s newest video, for ‘Panzerkampf’, based on one of the largest tank battles of all time, between the Soviets and the Germans.

Sabaton History 003 – Panzerkampf

Want to know what’s coming up? Go check out the Upcoming Albums List.

Thanks for stopping by! Come back tomorrow for another article!

Stay Metal \m/