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Ariadna Project - Parallel worlds 4.5/5

Reviewed: 3-27-09


1. Fire of hate
2. New dawn
3. Seasons of darkness
4. Learning to believe
5. The shadows will remain behind
6. Until the end
7. Opening the gates
8. The key
9. Rainfall
10. Magic tale
11. Parallel worlds
12. Lost horizon
13. More than meets the eye

Out of Argentina, Ariadna Project and their full-length debut 'Parallel worlds' have been a really nice surprise! The CD was previously released as the Spanish-language version 'Mundos Paralelos' (which I don't have), and since I'm not into Spanish-language bands, I'm happy that they released this English version, as it truly has surprised me, in many ways.

First off, the CD is in a style that I've always liked a lot, that being neo-classical power metal. Though it's a style (or sub-genre) that doesn't contain a lot of originality anymore, when it's well done, it can be one of the most enjoyable styles in metal. Comparisons stood out immediately, and they include Time Requiem, Magic Kingdom, Virtuocity, Evil Masquerade, Opus Atlantica, Euroforce, Majestic, Space Odyssey, Ring of Fire, Dorian Opera, Kenziner, Iron Mask, Zeelion, At Vance, Warmen, Steel Seal, Book of Reflections, and, um, you get the idea.

It's one thing to simply belong in this large group of bands though, and another to be one of the better bands in the group. Thankfully, in impressive fashion, Ariadna Project is one of the better bands. Their vocalist (Javier Yuchechen) has a clear voice perfect for the style, and he has experience too, as he's been a vocalist for Skiltron and is currently the vocalist of Selidor. Keyboardist (and guitarist) Guillermo De Medio is exceptional, and he provides an extremely impressive performance on each and every song. Rodrigo Gudina is the other guitarist, Alexis Espinosa is on bass, and Pablo Garrocho completes the band as the drummer.

'Parallel worlds' is a CD that's of high quality in every area, and it's definitely without a weak link. The rhythm section is very strong, complete with awesome riffs that will more than satisfy power metal fans, and when surrounded by the screaming guitar solos and amazing keyboard solos, I'm totally loving what I'm hearing. Plus, while there are some solid ballads (which I personally enjoy), there are a number of fast-paced songs too, and I can easily say that the band has obtained a nice balance of tempo. What truly takes the band up to their ultra-high level is the choruses though, as they're smooth, memorable, and showcase the band's songwriting skills.

The first few songs on the CD are fast and totally smokin' (especially track 2 "New dawn"), so I'll label them some of my favorites, but in reality, the CD hits me with one excellent song after another, and I remain pleasantly surprised throughout. Still, special mention must be made of the catchy-as-hell track 8 "The key", which contains an AOR flavor, and actually, there are a few spots on the CD that have a slight AOR influence. This makes sense, as track 13 "More than meets the eye" is a Europe cover, which is nicely done!

It's simple folks, if you're a neo-classical power metal fan and are familiar with the many bands mentioned earlier in this review, you've got to grab this CD as soon as possible. I won't promise that you'll hear a tremendous amount of originality, but what you will hear is very well done.




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