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Book of Reflections - Chapter ll/Unfold the future 1.5/5

Reviewed: 12-29-06


1. Unfold the future
2. Bringer of the torch
3. Free my soul
4. Heal me
5. Uncover the lie
6. Ashes to ashes
7. Make sure you don't fall
8. Deep inside
9. Blink of an eye
10. Got to get low
11. Love conquers all

There are good surprises and bad surprises. Book of Reflections' 2nd CD 'Unfold the future' is a bad surprise. Created by Lion Music owner Lars Eric Mattsson and containing a number of musicians from other bands, it's hard to believe the band could take such a big step backwards, but they have.

For those who are unfamiliar with Book of Reflections, their previous CD is their 's/t' debut, one that's in the neo-classical progressive/power metal style of bands like Evil Masquerade, Majestic, Iron Mask, Reptilian, Time Requiem, Ring of Fire and maybe Zeelion and Opus Atlantica. Although there are a few average songs on the debut, there are some great ones as well and I strongly consider it to be one of the better CDs in this neo-classical style.

While the debut was fronted by the popular Hubi Meisel, 'Unfold the future' is made up of a collection of vocalists from other bands. This doesn't work very well for me, as none of them stand out as showing a lot of emotion. But the CD contains a poor production, uninteresting songwriting and a complete lack of excitement; all aspects that really hurt the CD. There are too many average songs ("Bringer of the torch" and "Make sure you don't fall" for example), some that are much too light/progressive/rock ("Uncover the lie" and "Got to get low" for example), and "Heal me", along with "Love conquers all", are flat-out boring. "Unfold the future", "Free my soul" and "Ashes to ashes" are quite good, but still, they offer nothing that could make up for the many low points of the CD.

When I think of how good the slow "Let it go" from the debut is, or some of the excellent faster songs on that CD, 'Unfold the future' truly is a major disappointment. I haven't quite given up on the band however, as I forsee a different (hopefully established) line-up in the future, but die-hard fans of the neo-classical power metal style (or even the band's debut) should pass up on this one, and those who who don't really care for the style anyway, don't even look in the direction of 'Unfold the future'.




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