Burning Circle - Ruins Of Mankind review
|Album:||Ruins Of Mankind|
|Release date:||May 2012|
01. Circle Cycling
02. Ruins Of Mankind
03. Kindred Spirits
04. The Burning Circle Of Life
05. Ghosts Crying
06. Gabriel Principle
07. Gargoyle On A Belfry
08. Dies Illa
09. Dies Irae
10. What Would Life Be?
11. Murphy's Law [bonus]
Rating supplement: In the year of our Lord 2011, the Metal Powers That Be dropped a slew of great debuts on planet Earth, and decided to repeat it next year.
Going through prog metal releases of 2012, we've noticed all of the usual offerings - the classic and traditional, the quirky, the big-scale projects, the mellow and atmospheric, to name some of them. Now it's time for some closet prog™ - something seasoned and served with an abundance of "alien" genre elements and completely appropriate for people who don't enjoy pure progressive metal so much. Burning Circle play a perfect mixture of progressive and heavy, power and symphonic metal. But do not expect flowery music - there is a dirty edge to it.
In the short intro track, you'll notice an uncanny resemblance to Symphony X - more precisely, their neoclassical (Symphony X - Twilight In Olympus) and symphonic (V: The New Mythology Suite - The Oddysey) periods. But don't you worry, even though an occasional reference to these prog metal greats will inevitably pop up from time to time, it's mostly due to the similar mixture of genres in both bands' music. Burning Circle can certainly hold their own.
I already mentioned prog, heavy/power, and symphonic elements - what else is there? The band adds an unexpected dark twist with tasteful growls and menacing riffs, and also surprisingly funky bits and pieces (taking over the entire, ridiculously danceable bonus track "Murphy's Law"). Luckily, not only the composing versatility is here, but also the versatility in playing - a crazy chase of riffs and guitar solos, a keyboardist bringing the piano goods, juicy drum beats and that strong, prog bass (think Thomas Miller or even John Myung) will get your groove on. Your fear is that I'll now mention the vocalist unfortunately sucks? Hell no. Aleksandar somehow manages to sound like an inherently evil twin of both Russell Allen and Matt Barlow in the same time, but that only fills in for a part of the description - you'll just have to hear him for yourself. He also has a formidable narrative ability, which becomes evident when you're sucked into the band's storytelling epic "Ghosts Crying".
I'm most pleased a band like this comes from Serbia, kicking that much ass on the first album already - maybe 90% of the bands in the scene will finally figure out that fourth-tier, bland and cookie-cutter music just isn't going to cut it anymore. In case you wanted to check them out, but you fear about this being rooted in "that snobby prog genre", don't worry. It won't make you tap your feet in uneven rhythm for the rest of your life, or make you laugh hysterically every time you see a picture of a bear* or whatever it is that you silly people-that-don't-do-prog-metal fear.
P.S. Kudos for the decision to place the first ballad somewhere other than the second half of the album and for not placing the (obligatory?) ten-minute epic at the very end. It's a rare occasion in my reviewing career.
*My friends came to the conclusion bad Dream Theater jokes ruined my sense of humor.
||Written on 20.05.2012 by A part of the team since December 2011, writes about the progressive, the sad and the melodic. She's nice until she's not.|
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