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The Lylat Continuum – Ephemeral Award winner

The Lylat Continuum – Ephemeral
The Lylat Continuum – Ephemeral
by Dave "That Metal Guy" Campbell at 10 January 2021, 11:46 AM

From their Bandcamp page, “Ephemeral” is a Progressive Metal concept album blending Proggy Death Metal with Psychedelic Ambient breaks. This space epic flows seamlessly from track to track encompassing moments of sheer brutality with sections of pure euphoria. Lyrically, the album is about a mobile suit pilot who wakes up to a battlefield of dead enemies and allies. Our pilot has been left stranded and appears to be fatally wounded resulting in hallucinations and introspective thought. During this psychedelic trip, an epiphany occurs, and action is taken to right the wrongs of the past before his inevitable demise.” The album contains eight tracks.

“Into the Vast” opens the album. It’s a short mood-setting instrumental. Some ambient keys provide a nice, subtle melody that unfolds slowly, with layers. Bass notes come in and the keys become more accessible. It definitely has an outer-space quality to it. Harsh vocals come into play at the end. “Zero” begins with harsh Death Metal vocals, and some eerie dissonance in the background. The Progressive elements are immediately noticeable, as is the band’s sense of musicianship. The guitars build this sublime melody in the midst of the vocal angst. The transitions in and out of these ambient passages are expertly done. I love that you can hear the bass notes clearly, something that often gets lost in Metal music. Wait for it…that euphoric moment comes in the second half of this ten-minute opus. It’s as if Hell became slowly overrun with bright colored flowers and green trees sprung up everywhere.

“Epyon” is over 12-minutes in length. It begins with a sweet little piano and guitar melody. Bass, keys and drums join in, then a distorted guitar riff drops. Harsh vocals come in, but that melody doesn’t die. The ambient passages are surely enjoyable, full of charming melodies. I find that in general I enjoy these more than the harsh passages, but each has a role to play. “Level 5” is a about half as long as the previous song. It features some really nice melodies, and even some sax notes. The harsh vocals are still present but do not take over the song. Instead, it’s like you’ve wandered into someone else’s happy dream.

“Meta” begins with some heavier sounds, and that bass guitar tone is nice and fat. The Progressive elements are more noticeable here, swirling around with lead guitars, while the rhythm guitars and bass are ever shifting. This instrumental is as pleasing as it is intriguing. “Sector Y” is a short, three-minutes of bliss. Warm and peaceful tones come at you, and then they fade out, replaced with more tense tones. “Libra” begins with heavier and slower tones, and those vocals are about as harsh as they can be. In the background, the riff shifts to and fro, showcasing the band’s immense talent at their instruments.

“Ephemeral” closes the album. Warm and subdued tones open the song, along with sounds from outer space. At this point, subject has reached his epiphany. Bass guitar leads the next charge of heavy vocals. Overall, this was a fantastic album, done with precision, care, and attention to details. They transition in and out of these ambient and melodious passages with ease, and this is what strong songwriting sounds like. Their level of musicianship is almost unparalleled. Take their opening descriptions verbatim, because that is exactly what you get here.

Songwriting: 9
Musicianship: 10
Memorability: 9
Production: 9

4 Star Rating

Tracklist:
1. Into the Vast
2. Zero
3. Epyon
4. Level 5
5. Meta
6. Sector Y
7. Libra
8. Ephemeral
Lineup:
Chrys Robb – Vocals, Keyboards
Chris Garza – Guitars, Programming
Ian Turner – Guitars
Evan Sammons – Drums
Jordan Eberhardt – Bass
Record Label: Independent
     


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