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Max Pie - Eight Pieces - One World Award winner

Max Pie
Eight Pieces - One World
by Lior "Steinmetal" Stein at 24 June 2013, 10:26 PM

I have been contemplating with myself regarding the title I have before me. I probably said it once, but you know me, always trying to find the original entrance into a review. So by all means, keep on reading. Maybe it is like a sort of an infection, a contagious one, rattling along the world of Progressive Metal. It seeks to exploit the mind of its hospitable body in order to come up with an enigmatic heading for an album. Crossing the line with the last notation seemed appropriate, but I will not start debating about it. Facts are facts, and here I have the Belgic MAX PIE, the current version of progressive table manners of DREAM THEATER, SYMPHONY X, KAMELOT, VISION DIVINE but also has enough vigour and heaviness akin to some of the latest works of ICED EARTH. While their earlier releases have been unknown to me, right up until today where I had to check out even for a bit what the ruckus and the fuss are all about, I came to believe that the band’s second album named “Eight Pieces – One World”, via Mausoleum Records, may as well be their gem to date. Still not sure about the meaning of the title, as my mind has been racing about it for some time, so I will let this tempting philosophical deliberation go in order to lower the headache coming in.

Ever since I started listening to Progressive Metal albums, especially ones saturated with Power Metal, whether Euro or American driven, there has been a piece, an element, that for me seemed important, even crucial at times, for the success of a release, and that is flow. Not catchiness as you might think, I know that you did even for a moment there, but how the release sail away right before you so you will be left behind alone, hungry for just another fixation, an additional bonus maybe, but nothing is there to feat upon. Others might call it addiction, I consider it as might. Over time I found out a nice collection of releases of this particular tasty brew that took my spirit into a different realm and back in a flash. As you possibly suspected, “Eight Pieces – One World” turned out to be one of those albums, else why would have granted such an intro right? Anyway, within the grandiloquent production values of modern times, I got caught in the web of musical articulation, captivating shrewdness revealing impressive song arrangements and structures, melodic boon and fullness, darkened aggression and a spiralling voice travelling the edges of space and time. Damien Di Fresco smeared the entire release with passionate playing, displaying heavy rhythm guitar riffages, great melodic licks so tantalizing while also, as the one in charge of the atmosphere, shedding a touch of placid keyboards as a fine back up. Tony Carlino, performing with elegance and professionalism, showed me what happens when you infuse Joe Elliot with Russell Allan, a near seamless unison of voice designs.

The wayward assorted “The Side of a Dime”, stepped in with an Arabian initiation of darbuka / percussion initiation playing only to welcome contemporary astute Power Metal to barge in swiftly. I just couldn’t get enough of toughness and fury this number displayed, sometimes even approximating works of MYSTIC PROPHECY. However, the chorus depicted retained a soothing atmosphere, truly engulfing, ready to penetrate your emotional defenses. Di Fresco’s portrayed as off the scale, simply amazing parade of shred attack. “Addictions” affected my senses with the same decisive vibe of the ultimate former number’s heavy riffing routine. I might admit that it sounded a bit darkened but a tad melodic. “Earth's Rules” lifting the veil of blackness to find a shimmer of light, a melodious space voyage around Earth’s system. No doubt one of the slyest songs of this release, a DREAM THEATER meets SYMPHONY X with the extra buzz of Carlino’s vocals. “I'm in Love” had me pondering about an upcoming ballad, seemed so obvious at first, but I guess that it took only a little while to realize that other than being poignant and dramatic singing, this one signaled the meaning of true musical passion to touch every nerve in the listener’s body. Lyrics might be somewhat cheesy, yet the hard on music overpowered the words. Entrusting this song’s future fame with a simplified lead lick appeared as a great bet, adding with the vocal line, it will entrap you for certain. Join the tour through various dimensions, version of a world to be called your own, reach out and buy this one, “Eight Pieces – One World”, is it that complex enough?     

4 Star Rating

Tracklist:
1. Cage of Sins
2. I'm Sealed
3. Earth's Rules
4. I'm in Love
5. Vendetta
6. The Side of a Dime
7. Addictions
8. Don't Tell Me Lies
Lineup:
Tony Carlino - Vocals
Damien Di Fresco - Guitars
Oliver Lemiere - Bass
Sylvain Godenne - Drums

Guests:
Simone Mularoni - Guitars
Record Label: Mausoleum Records
     


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