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Pandea - Soylent Green

Soylent Green
by Dimitris Kontogeorgakos at 26 April 2010, 7:04 PM

PANDEA is a new band formed by two MIND ODYSSEY members, Dan Uhden and Mario Le Mole, and "Soylent Green" is the title of their debut release. Well, the term 'band' is not 100% applicable due to the long list found in the place of the lineup as shown here. PANDEA is one of those occasions where one or maybe two high skilled musicians decide to create something special and for this they invite quite many guests. This is exactly the situation with PANDEA, a project ready to present something like a Rock opera following the steps of Arjen Lucassen's AYREON and -why not?- Tobias Sammet's AVANTASIA. Don't be frightened by the 'Rock' label and rest assured that this is a Metal album featuring a strong progressive backbone.

The title of the album is 'borrowed' by a 70s sci-fi movie which was dealing with all the problems that could arise from the over-population of Earth and the 'famous' Greenhouse effect. Musically this is of minor interest but in some extent it does explain the need to have many singers to play the different characters. After many CD spins I can say that it serves perfectly the role of a story-telling. The different vocals and the fruitful collection of melodies create images that, combined with the short narrations, succeed in supporting the concept. The a la AYREON keyboards and electronic effects enhance the sci-fi profile but through the 70s looking glass this keeps a safe distance from the 'cold' and consequently unimaginative 00s movies (but this is a different discussion).

Music wise the compositions are not overloaded and in general the album flows at ease and keeps the listener's interest in a high level. But there is a specific catch with this type of albums; the listener finds it hard to get connected to the band, mainly due to the presence of different singers that make the band look faceless with no distinct character. In order to avoid this trap the music has to be composed in such way that one can distinguish the band by the instrumental parts and this is something absolutely difficult to achieve. In fact, this is the album's Achille's heel where the music is governed by the aforementioned AYREON influences with some HELLOWEEN Power Metal finishing touches and some Derris-sounding vocals. On the other hand, this is a debut release and a lot can happen until the next one; so, all sci-fi concept lovers consider "Soylent Green" a very good suggestion.

3 Star Rating

  1. Intro
  2. Lost Eternity
  3. Nomadic Life
  4. Clan Of Saluation
  5. Point Of No Return
  6. Today's Tuesday
  7. Eden Again
  8. Hands Tied Up
  9. Final Real
  10. Flesh And Light
  11. Golden Gate
  12. Outro
Mario le Mole
Buzz Dee
Norbert Schmidt
Norbert Klempo Bode
Ille Illgner
Jacky Lee Man
Dan Uhden
Sascha the Pascha

Dan Uhden
Victor Smolski
Ernst Ernie Reuter

Robert Hanke
Detlef Dudziak
Jan-Michael Keller

Sascha The Pascha
Max Bendel
Christoph Ruhlmann
Record Label: Pure Steel Records


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Edited 06 December 2022

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