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Meridian - The Fate Of Atlantis Award winner

Meridian
The Fate Of Atlantis
by Jason "Monotonija" McCraw at 17 April 2018, 12:55 PM

Melodic Heavy Metal: A genre that has all but left its roots to incorporate many added styles and genre crossovers; yet here, it is performed by musicians who obviously have a deep appreciation for what it was when it had first been conceived. MERIDIAN slam onto the scene with their new four-song EP, "The Fate Of Atlantis", which conveys the mood lost in so many countless subgenres over the years. This is pure Melodic Metal at its best, absolutely oozing with stellar sound production, crystal clear mixing, and riffs and solos that are just about as ferocious as a pack of wolves protecting their young from the dangers of the wild.

"The Fate Of Atlantis" bursts into life with its opening track, the fast-paced "Off To War". The guitars are like a never-ending waterfall splashing over the jagged rocks of the rhythm section, and the vocals of Lars Marker are the resulting body of water at its base, all of which combine to create an infinite frothy explosion that is simultaneously beautiful and chaotic in its nature. The aforementioned vocals are rife with power, and the music itself is the heartbeat which accompanies its soul. On their previous outings, MERIDIAN had shown a tendency to mature and become an entity all of their own. Now, in 2018, after the seemingly permanent addition of guitarist Marco Angioni, they have grown into what they were destined to become; an untouchable powerhouse on the Melodic Metal scene.

The album's second track, "Fragments Of A Life", takes the tempo down quite a few notches, exhibiting a sound faintly reminiscent of RUSH during their "Moving Pictures" days. It doesn't stray far from true Metal at all, however, and still manages to build itself into an impenetrable wall of sound as it nears its end. Track three on "The Fate Of Atlantis" is the record's title track. This brings together all of the elements explored on the album's first two songs and swirls them all into a magical culmination of Progressive and Enchanting Metal that shines like a gigantic sun visible throughout all of infinite space. Some passages are comparable to what IRON MAIDEN made famous in the mid- to late-1980s with dueling lead guitars tap dancing over the soft rumblings of the drums and bass, while others utilize full and rich chords that really crank up the intensity. For an album that is so short, even by EP standards, the titular number makes it feel as though the listener has just endured a long journey down a long and winding road which offered many surprises around its many blind twists and turns.

"The Fate Of Atlantis" closes on a more upbeat note with "Scream For Me", wherein singer Lars Marker puts on a multi-octave show that wows. The entire band does it all in this epic closing track, and the lengthy guitar solo is absolutely phenomenal. As the album rides along into oblivion, a chanting chorus as its steed, one is left awestruck at the wide scope presented in such a limited amount of time. It just goes to show how much a band can achieve when they allow themselves to pinpoint their focus, rather than try to stretch a theme far beyond its limits with a seventy-minute, twelve-song opus that has much more potential of losing its way. MERIDIAN have created something wonderful here, and I am sure that all of you will enjoy and appreciate it just as much as I did upon my first listen, if not more so.

Songwriting: 9
Originality: 8
Memorability: 10
Production: 10

4 Star Rating

Tracklist:
1. Off To War
2. Fragments Of A Life
3. The Fate Of Atlantis
4. Scream For Me
 
Lineup:
Lars Marker - Vocals
Martin J. Andersen – Guitars
Peter Bruun - Bass
Marco Angioni - Guitars
Klaus Agerbo – Drums
 
Record Label: Mighty Music
     


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