Newcomers Articulus are bringing their own take within the progressive metal framework. Being a debut it has just taken that bit longer to fully digest and shake off any pre-conceived notions.
Chris Willumsen and Erling Malm are the mainstays behind this project and have brought in Dirk Verbeuren the current drummer for Megadeth. There is an air of mystery surrounding the whole package and makes it all that more alluring..
This is a busy record but is firmly focused on melody and song structures that require full attention. Sweeping melodies are the order of the day with razor sharp rhythm guitars overlaid with beautifully layered vocals. Articulus is melodic heavy metal with an epic flair and a dose of progressive musicianship not unlike Vision Divine and Angra with touches of Dream Theater.
The lyrics are based around world history, art and classical antiquity. The whole package flows together with each song having individual drawings on the album sleeve to augment the complexity of the songs.
“Beneath the Veneer” is the first go to track to appreciate the full breadth of the band’s sound. The drums are super tight with bags of variation and they shine in their own right without detracting from the song.
The guitars drive the songs along with the riffs being very inventive mixing straight rhythms and plenty of guitar wizardry to really hold your attention. “The Bonfire of Vanities” stands out due its superb rolling double bass and even incorporates blast beats into the cacophony of melody to stunning effect.
The variety on this record is what makes it standout. “The Last” is a powerful track and one of the biggest epics on the album. Orchestration is more to the forefront with some beautiful piano playing adding another flavour to Articulus’s sound. “The Smouldering Ember” is the straight forward headbanger that can easily be imagined to be a big live song.
If it is a record you are looking to sit down and immerse yourself in – you will not go far wrong with this one.
- The Bonfire of the Vanities
- Beneath the Veneer
- The Unconfined
- And Velvet became Iron
- The Smouldering Ember
- Pulse of the Earth
- Letter from Rome, 1610
- The last
- A Fair Intruder
- An Asp unto my Breast
Chris Willumsen – Multi Instruments
Erling Malm – Multi Instruments
Dirk Verbeuren – Drums