Tuesday, March 13, 2012

Epica - Requiem For The Indifferent (2012)


As we waited patiently, Epica has finally returned with a new symphonic masterpiece, entitled “Requiem For The Indifferent.” It’s 14 tracks of gorgeous orchestrated instruments and stunning vocals with wild performances of electrifying guitars and beastly double bass pedal drumming. The album will have you surrounded with ravishing melodies and breath taking lyrics that are sure to be stuck in you’re head for days.

The album opens with marching snares rolls and soothing strings in “Karma.” The two and a half minute intro contains epic choirs and orchestrated strings to help build up “Monopoly On Truth.” This song comes rumbling in with wild guitar riffs and insane drum fills that will wake you up immediately. Relentless snares punch you in the face while melodic guitars wrap you in circles completely surrounding you with destructive riffs. Simons take over the beginning of the verse with her operatic voice while detailed drum rolls shake beneath you. She is then met with the wicked growls of Mark Jansen which completely rip through the verse. You’ll immediately start to see the difference in this album as you’ll notice that Jansen’s growls are used a lot more often than the bands previous work. Each verse jumps back and forth between the female singing and monstrous growls. The chorus has calm vocals delivered by Simons with gentle tones. Later in the song you’ll come across the first solo of the album and yes it’s a bomber. Each note rips through you with gorgeous sounds while double bass pedals pound away in the background.

“Delirium” opens with soft chants and slow piano riffs that really capture a beautiful image. Simons steps in for the verse with angelic lyrics while piano notes continue to shine in the background. The chorus is mellow and is carried out by Simons’ soothing voice as she delivers catchy melodies. A light choir chants along with her during the refrain giving the song a more full sound. Later enter drums and strings adding more rhythm to the music but yet still keeps the mood calm. As the track builds and builds, electrifying distorted guitars fade in for a short while as the chorus is repeated with reckless energy. This is a ballade you don’t want to miss.

Arabic tones open up the song “Requiem For The Indifferent“ as it really puts together a different sound than we‘re used to with Epica. The verse jumps at you with a few grunts before Simons comes in with her operatic voice. Meanwhile galloping drum rolls run rapid through the background as vicious guitar riffs chug away violently. The chorus reminds you a little more of their older material as Simons soars over the guitars with high pitch melodies shattering the musical scale. This runs right into more wicked growls that are filled with demonic tones. The drums are definitely something to play close attention to in this track. The patterns are constantly changing along with the tempo while each fill is explosive and unique. After a short rest with the instrumental, “Anima,” the song “Guilty Demeanor” comes in with punishing guitar riffs that’ll knock you out of your seat for sure. Blaring chugging guitars are accompanied by dark strings and fast double bass pedals. These monstrous guitar riffs carry through the verses into the refrain which Simons provides you with catchy vocals and clear lyrics. “Deep Water Horizon” is a little more subtle on the intro as quiet acoustic riffs play gently as Simons hypnotizes you with her attractive voice. Distortioned guitars fade in towards the end of the verse building up the chorus perfectly. Theses mesmerizing lyrics will have you hitting the replay button immediately.

Later you’ll come across “Avalanche” which starts out slow with gloomy strings and angelic violins. Simons shines in the verse which she is accompanied by acoustic guitar riffs and light strings. Her operatic tones send a chill down your spine as you feel the emotion in her voice. However just as you become comfortable, Jansen swoops in with deadly growls that’ll make you shit yourself. Blasting guitar riffs echo in the background with catchy melodies and thumping bass lines. A chanting choir chimes in during the middle of the track as a rush of violins speed by with captivating sounds. Jansen steps back in with more vicious grunts destroying everything in its way. The chugging guitar riffs will have you throwing your devil horns in the air towards the end as a mind blowing solo comes through and sweeps you off your feet. This leads right into the final song, entitled “Serenade Of Self-Destruction.” This epic masterpiece runs for over nine minutes long and contains everything from soft piano intros to hard hitting guitar riffs backed with pulverizing drum rolls filled with detailed patterns that’ll have you bobbing your head recklessly. The tempos change in speed constantly leaving you with no time to guess what is about to happen next. The song itself is a real experience and you’ll want to replay it a couple of times in order to catch everything.

The 14th track is considered a bonus track, entitled “Twin Flames.” It’s a gorgeous ballad that Simons really shows of her reach in pitch and operatic style. Soothing strings and piano notes carry you away as you’re put to sleep by Simons ravishing vocals and beautiful lyrics. The refrain will have you humming its melodies in your sleep. Before you know it, the album is back to track one and the adventure starts all over again!

Epica continues to change their sound in a unique and positive way separating each album from the one before. “Requiem For The Indifferent” jumps through their norm of classical tones and orchestrations and pushes forward to an even more aggressive sound than they’ve ever reached before. Monstrous growls and machine gun guitar riffs add a special spark that really ignites the flame for this album. This is a pure beauty and the beast style at its best.

9/10

Official Site - http://www.epica.nl/
Myspace - http://www.myspace.com/epica

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