Images Of Eden - 'Rebuilding The Ruins'

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Images Of Eden - 'Rebuilding The Ruins'

Certainly an album for those cerebral moments.

Information regarding this new album from Images Of Eden was forwarded to me by our esteemed Editor, and eventually band supremo Gordon Tittsworth sent me not only a copy of 'Rebuilding The Ruins', but also the two previous albums – but with a stern instruction to focus on the newie!
Well, of course I will, but if you find what I have to say about the new album sufficiently tempting for you to contemplate a purchase, then I do strongly urge you to consider the previous albums too: and especially the really tremendous second one ('Sunlight Of The Spirit') that appeared back in 2006 as it is a somewhat less intense listening experience!

Ok then...to the latest release by the combo, presently comprising rhythm & bass guitarist/vocalist and songwriter Tittsworth, along with Dennis Mullin (lead guitar), L. Dean Harris(keyboards) and Chris Lucci (drums & percussion). It is a 74 minute progressive metal juggernaut: 11 tracks, only one of which is shorter than five minutes. I've done a lot of listening to all three IOE albums (but mostly the new one, of course!) and the thing that has struck me is how it is eminently possible it is to geographically locate the origins of a band from the vibe/style of the music. In this instance, it would be impossible to believe that the prog metal on offer could possibly derive from a European band.

The phenomenal 'Crosses In The Sand' gets the album underway in fine style, and there's no criticism of not selecting one of the more immediate songs to draw the listener in. After a gentle piano-led opening against some weird sounds, powerful guitar riffs and runs alternate with less frenetic melodic moments: and this pretty much sets the scene for the entire album. One of the things to note is that the drums are quite high in the mix. No problem there – Lucci's a hugely inventive and stylish performer. Oh, and he also edited and mixed the album; fancy that!!



I'd like to be able to compare Tittsworth's vocal delivery with some others; but to attempt to do so would be to distract from the fact that he has a unique voice that morphs into different styles, textures and emotions as required, all delivered with a mid-range to higher pitch. It needed to be good, because his lyrical imagery is really quite intense and I found it heavy going at times!

Not so with songs such as 'Tribal Scars', which is about (and dedicated to) war heroes: both those who do not return home, and those that do and bring their experiences with them as changed people. I must also mention 'Dreams Unbroken', 'Children Of Autumn' and the epic, 12 minute 'Sunlight Of The Spirit…' as further very special moments on this hugely enjoyable album.

However, along with some other reviewers, I do feel that the length of this album is rather too much for the complexity of the music, as there is oh so much to absorb. Nevertheless, it should be a considered purchase for those of you who normally purchase albums by Fates Warning and their ilk. It is certainly one for those cerebral moments!

Paul Jerome Smith

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