Manticora - 8 deadly sins 4/5

Reviewed: 12-30-04





Tracklist:

1. Prefent. If? (intro)
2. 1934. King of the absurd
3. 1944. Playing god
4. 1946. Melancholic
5. 1963. Creator of failure
6. 1964. It feels like the end
7. 1969. Enigma
8. 1981. Fall from grace
9. 2004. Help me like no one can
10. Prefent. If, then (outro)


Finally, the Manticora CD we all knew they were capable of creating! They showed promise right away with their debut 'Roots of eternity', lots of thick riffs, and a vocalist with such a unique voice that's very easily recognized. There were plenty of highlights with the following 'Darkness with tales to tell', but they still weren't quite blowing me away yet.
Their 3rd CD 'Hyperion' was a definite step backwards though. The songs are way too complex, too expiremental, and there are moments when the vocals don't seem to fit the music. The guitar work is great, and there are enough solid songs to make it a worthy effort, but I've found myself listening to their first 2 CDs more often than 'Hyperion'.

Thankfully, the band has gotten rid of the problems that were holding back 'Hyperion', and have come up with a sensational 4th CD '8 deadly sins'. The songs are fast and furious, well played, and with a much better flow overall. This is vocalist Lars F. Larsen's best performance to date, and he fits the aggressive style very well. There's no expirementing, they've just gone out and played one excellent song after another. I love the powerful track 4 "Melancholic", and track 6 "It feels like the end" definitely hits a deep spot. I must also mention the slower track 8 "Fall from grace" as being a favorite, as it starts out with a very cool harpsichord surprise, and is a nice break from the intense and ultra-fast CD.

It's great to see that Manticora has risen to a high competetive level. Along with Brainstorm's 'Soul temptation', and Mystic Prophecy's 'Regressus', this is one of the better CDs on the heavier side of the power metal genre. Hopefully they can continue to climb the mountains of metal and someday reach the peak of perfection.



CLINT




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