Fireworks

Distorted Harmony - 'Utopia' http://www.rocktopia.co.uk/media/reviews/photos/thumbnail/200x200s/3a/4e/f5/2884_distortedrealityutopia_1351100959.jpg Hot

Added by Central Electronic Brain     October 24, 2012    
 
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As an album it is phenomenal; as a debut album it is inspirational.

Israel is not a country that has produced many entrants into the musical universe covered by this magazine, but perhaps the best known is the progressive metal band, Orphaned Land. Distorted Harmony started out in 2009 and also profess to occupy this same musical genre, its five members bringing wonderfully diverse influences and high quality performance skills to bear on an album that is, however, far more accessible to listeners whose preferences rarely stray into this territory than many prog metal albums – and certainly more easily digestible than that found on the albums of their fellow countrymen!

‘Utopia’ is one of those albums that keeps the listener mesmerised by the excellent lyrical quality of the material presented, some of which are close to the tear-jerking variety, and the quietly spoken section in the 12-minute juggernaut of a title track that concludes the album (“We fight wars so we can keep fighting wars at home. at work…It’s all one great big beautiful mess…Countries make their bread by selling weapons making death by baking life….”) is oh so achingly accurate!

Fireworks - The Ultimate Magazine For Melodic Rock Music

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In vocalist Misha Soukhinin, the band have found a wonderfully expressive baritone voice, who most of the time delivers the necessary warmth and gravitas where required by the songs but who shows himself capable of delivering real venom and acerbity when necessary…and come as a surprise when first encountered (in ‘Obsession’). In places I also noted a similarity in tone and stylistic approach to both Vincent Kavanagh (Anathema) and Steven Wilson (Porcupine Tree) in some of their performances.

As for the six tracks that comprise this commendably concise (at 54 minutes) album of its type, they are all absolute winners, none replicating the approach, precise structure or atmosphere of another and yet each typically has a modular format which can interface a section containing fantastic power chords next to one that is pastoral in nature which in turn might be next to a more technical part that is in turn next to a swirly organ section. It’s a sort of a pot purri, but it is clear that everything has been meticulously conceived and performed with complete conviction and assuredness. Nothing overwhelms and the glorious melodies that underpin everything across the album reappear sufficiently frequently to provide a homely foundation.

Enigmatic? Definitely! Talented? Most certainly. Distorted Harmony is a fantastic prospect for the future, and although comparisons with “the likely candidates” could be made, I refuse to do so, for there is so much that is fresh and original here. As an album it is phenomenal; as a debut album it is inspirational!

I have reviewed from a finished CD, but the band is offering the entire album as a free download – so what are you waiting for?

Paul Jerome Smith

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