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Symphony X - The Odyssey

8.7 | 873 votes |
Release date: 2002
Style: Symphonic power metal, Progressive metal


1141 have it
94 want it

01. Inferno (Unleash The Fire)
02. Wicked
03. Incantations Of The Apprentice
04. Accolade II
05. Kings Of Terrors
06. The Turning
07. Awakenings
08. The Odyssey
    1 - Part I: Odysseus Theme / Overture
    2 - Part II: Journey To Ithaca
    3 - Part III: The Eye
    4 - Part IV: Circe (Daughter Of The Sun)
    5 - Part V: Sirens
    6 - Part VI: Scylla And Charybdis
    7 - Part VII: The Fate Of The Suitors / Champion Of Ithaca
09. Masquerade '98 [Japanese and limited edition bonus]
10. Frontiers [Japanese bonus]

Top 20 albums of 2002: 8
Top 200 albums of all time: 178

Additional info
The limited edition includes an extended booklet.

"Masquerade '98" is taken from Prelude To The Millennium.
Some of the lyrics from "King Of Terrors" are by Edgar Allan Poe.

Staff review by
Dream Taster
Here it is! The new Symphony X opus has finally been released! After the live album Live On The Edge Of Forever, The Odyssey is finally in my hands. First thing to be noticed: the artwork is excellent with a complete booklet including pictures of the recording and lyrics, of course. But the important point is that from the first note to the last, The Odyssey appears to be the heaviest release of the band! If Michael Pinnella's keyboards are still the basis of Symphony X's music, the guitar parts are now more aggressive and the result is even better! But the big improvement on this album is due to Russell Allen's vocals. On some songs, he sounds close to Ronnie James Dio and without this change, I think that The Odyssey would have remained a classic Symphony X album. Russell Allen shows us once again that he is a complete singer and the music is the best they've ever played.

published 22.09.2003 | Comments (17)

Guest review by
There is an undeniable affinity among many metal fans and musicians for things fantastic and medieval in nature. From the imagery (costumes, album covers), to the instrumentation and style of the music (folk, symphonic), to the lyrical subject matter, the metal community is enamored with things ancient. Many musicians use their music as a vehicle for creating milieus similar to the ones that they grew up with, and some go a step farther and set their favorite tales to music. The danger with this is that many metal fans, having grown up reading J.R.R. Tolkein, H.P. Lovecraft, and Robert Howard as well as the classic epic tales, know and love these works as well, and will be let down if the music does not stand up to the story. Unfortunately, it is this trap into which Symphony X stumbled with its release "The Odyssey."
The individual members of Symphony X are definitely talented musicians. Guitar wizardry and keyboard flair permeate the entire disc. Vocalist Russell Allen has strong pipes, and is able to belt out some fine Power Metal. The problem here is not with the musical dexterity, but rather with the composition. The music just does not fit with its lyrical content.
The Greek poem on which the title track is based is an epic of a man's struggle, with the gods, with the elements, and with the unscrupulous men who would steal his wife and his home. However, the music never captures any of this dark mood. The first four minutes or so of this track are an orchestral overture that frankly would seem more at home in an animated Disney film. The musical key here is high, and Allen's voice is too reminiscent of Tommy Shaw (from the band Styx) to be an effective mouthpiece for someone enduring the wrath of an angry god. The music fails to convey any of the frustration, despair, sorrow, and anger that Odysseus felt throughout his ordeal.
This phenomenon appears elsewhere as well. "King of Terrors," which appears to be based on "The Strange Case of Dr. Jeckyll and Mr. Hyde," and which I have seen praised by other reviewers, is similarly upbeat. Contrast this with other metal interpretations of classic tales, (for example, Iced Earth's take on "Dante's Inferno"), and the disconnect here becomes more striking.
I truly wish that I liked this album more. The music is good; the lyrics are good - they just don't work well together. I listened to "The Odyssey" expecting anger, and I got happiness and hope. I looked for testosterone, but was given saccharine.
published 05.06.2008 | Comments (5)

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Comments: 20   Visited by: 1251 users
03.06.2010 - 18:34
Rating: 10
koja heavy
03.06.2010 - 23:39
Rating: 10
Angelic Storm
Absolutely awesome album. I cant find any fault with it whatsoever. And the title track is just a masterpiece. <3
28.10.2010 - 03:32
Rating: 9
I'm in love with this album, all killer no filler!
28.10.2010 - 04:11
Kap'N Korrupt
Account deleted
I was just listening to this album today and the Odyssey never ceases to amaze me...
17.06.2011 - 03:07
Rating: 10
Let's face it; the title track is BEAUTIFUL.
23.09.2011 - 22:27
Rating: 10


26.09.2011 - 19:54
John Shock
They Are The Champions! Oh fuck this album is awesome, specially The Odyssey song! Wow preety!
03.11.2011 - 14:03
Rating: 9
Utterly amazing album! Only recently discovered Odyssey but has gone straight to the top of the Power Metal heap for me.
Epic, Symponic, Brilliance. Will they ever reach these heights again? I truly live in hope!
\m/ \m/
08.11.2011 - 19:42
Rating: 8
It's a good album but too overrated IMHO!

I would give it a 7,5 MAX
Beware the Shadows of Dusk
05.05.2012 - 00:00
Valentin B
All I have to say is that the title track is the BEASTLIEST thing that SX have ever produced. so complex, so heavy and so melodic in places but still retaining emotional meaning, it's almost like a soundtrack to an extremely epic film. even counting Iconoclast this is imo SX's best over-10 minute song (and boy does this one pass that mark).
10.07.2013 - 01:29
Rating: 9
Very impressive!!
better than others.
11.07.2013 - 08:07
Rating: 10
Metal slave
Written by behdad_sh on 10.07.2013 at 01:29

better than others.

Indeed. Many others...
19.05.2014 - 19:00
Rating: 8
Sang Dalang Abu
Written by behdad_sh on 10.07.2013 at 01:29

Very impressive!!
better than others.

what you mean?
22.11.2014 - 21:20
Rating: 10
Champion of Ithaca!
02.12.2015 - 12:36
Rating: 10
In my opinion from this album they begin to harden their sound, start a second stage =)
18.06.2016 - 12:35
Rating: 8
A big step away from the neoclassical influences the earlier releases had and here is a more mainstream prog metal approach. With mainstream I don't mean bad, but this is the kind of prog metal you hear way to much. It's meaty riffs that just go on and on and the songs never get a chance to breath. I used to think that "The Odyssey" was the only good song here (and by good I mean pure brilliance!), but after many years owning this album I started to appreciate the whole album a bit more. It's not great but "Accolade II" is pretty nice follow up to the first masterpiece and "Inferno" and "King of Terrors" are quite rocking tracks. Not my favourite Symphony X album but worth owning.
Everything's twice as bright with money in your hands
19.01.2022 - 11:39
Rating: 9
It's been said before, but the title track is a masterpiece! One of Symphony X's best songs for sure. Inferno (Unleash The Fire) is also amazing, and Accolade II is great as well.

9.0/10 for me - a close call between this, TDWOT or Paradise Lost for their best album.
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21.02.2022 - 14:45
Rating: 10
Perfectly awesome. A masterpiece!
05.03.2022 - 21:51
Rating: 8
Nocturnal Bro
What a masterpiece! Fantastic operatic vocals, complex and engaging instrumentation, and epic storytelling... I wish all power metal sounded this amazing!
Each song gets better until one reaches the ultimate climax: the bombastic title track!
03.09.2022 - 04:57
Rating: 6
Theory Snob
I find this slightly better than V, but still fairly forgettable and plain.
"I am too stupid to be human, and I lack common sense." - Proverbs 30:2
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