(9/10) After a four years German prog metal band Vanden Plas is back with a new CD. After they have released their latest album in 2010 they come back with the newest record called "Chronicles of the world - Netherworld".
The album is an awesome comeback. Not only that the band made again a big step forward on an already high level - it is also the fact that the new album tells a story which makes it standing out. The whole thing started years ago, when Vanden Plas and Wolfgang Holbein started a creative cooperation. Holbein is not a nobody. In fact he is one of the authors selling millions of books all over the world. Since he is also a fan of Vanden Plas he approached the band and suggested to work together. The result was the rock opera called "Bloodnight". During 2012 and 2013 the show became a overwhelming success. All 25 shows have been sold out and the audiance rescted very positive.
The new album from Vanden Plas contains ten songs which represents path 1 of the theater piece. This leads to the assumption, that there will be also a path 2. And indeed, this is the plan - path 2 is expected to be released in 2015.
So, what to say about the song. I must say that you get 100% Vanden Plas, which means 100% powerful progressive metal. I actually think, that the album is better than the latest releases from Dream Theater. This has to do with the fact that Vanden Plas puts the song much more in focus instead of giving individual musical excellence a front row seat. I appreciate this a lot and Vanden Plas achieve a perfect mix out of musical complexity, hard, powerful music and catching melodies. This combination isn't found too often. I was actually reminded to the last releases of the incredible Savatage.
The album starts with an orchestral intro with spoken word (done by Holbein himself). A dramatic opening for this album, which fits perfect to kick off this album. "The black night" is following this introduction and a is an eight minutes long power prog track. Dense keyboards build the base for this song while a heavy riff gives the song the needed aggressiveness. It's also Kuntz's fantastic vocals which we know alteady from the past, which makes this album an experience. Crystal clear and still with a lot on passion and strength. A almost brutal riff opens "Godmaker". A start like a thunder, before the song continues a bit more silent with vocals and piano. But of course this doesn't last for too long. Heavy riffing accompanies the song and make it a 5 minutes prog metal masterpiece. After all these energetic eruption it is time for a more peaceful tune. "Misery affection- Prelude" is its name. A short ballad performed as a duett supported by a piano, which lead you to "A ghosts requiem". The style continues. Piano based with beautiful vocals and a choir the song is carrying a lot of emotions - as it needs to be if you want to tell a story. In the end it gets back to more power and the choral passage finalizes a touching track. "New vampyre" is another stunning VandenPlas song, before "The king and the children of lost war" the next eight minute anthem starts. Pounding guitars are pushing this song and the band shows their whole repertoire in this tune. This is my personal fave. "Misery affection" comtinues what tHe prelude introduced a few songs earlier before "Soul alliance" with its pumping cool bassline and "Inside" round off sn excellence musical journey.
"Chronicles of the immortal - Netherworld" became a great album from performed by an awesome band and written by a highly creative team. Great that we can look forward to path 2. in the meantime enjoy path 1. It's worth it. Highly recommended!
- Vision 1ne
- Vision 2wo The black knight
- Vision3hree Godmaker
- Vision 4our Misery affection prelude
- Vision 5ive A ghost requiem
- Vision 6ix New vampyre
- Vision 7even The king and the children of lost war
- Vision 8ight Misery affection
- Vision 9ine Soul alliance
Label: Frontiers Records
Genre: Prog Metal