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Tracklist: 1. Absolution of the Soul 3:58 2. Distant Pale Future 5:08 3. Shallow 6:14 4. Unholy Fields of the Dead 4:54 5. Elysium Dream 4:38 6. Selling God 3:08 7. Imagination Overdose 3:46 8. Dead Or Dreaming 4:18 9. Cyber Messiah 4:29 10. Identify 3:45 All music written and arranged by Into Eternity. All lyrics written by Tim Roth. Line-up: Daniel Nargang - lead vocals, guitar Tim Roth - lead & death vocals, guitar Jim Austin - death vocals, drums Scott Krall - backing vocals, bass With: Chris McDougall - keyboards & Amy Ozog (female voices) Produced by Into Eternity. Recorded, mixed, & mastered by Kelly Churko & Grant Hall at "Touchwood" studios, Regina, Canada.
Prologue. "Dead Or Dreaming" is the second Into Eternity album, which, as well as their first one, was released by the Dutch "DVS Records" label. To read the review on the band's debut album click here. Also, you can read the interview with the owner of "DVS Records" and organizer of the ProgPower festival Rene Janssen, which he recently gave to Progressor (cleck here).
The Album. On their second album "Dead Or Dreaming", Into Eternity perform a dark and sinister brand of furiously paced Progressive Metal with certain elements of Death- and Doom-Metal and without any of the traces of Neo Prog-Metal (as it was in places on the band's debut album). Each of the album's songs contains a lot of changes of tone and mood, bone crushing metal riffs and rare, yet unique, Art Rock-ish parts. Soft melodic singing beset by brutal roars and black screams as usual, though all of it sounds much more effective here than on "Into Eternity". All of the band members are not only masterful musicians: they are also dedicated vocalists, so the vocal palette on the album is as rich and diverse as the instrumental arrangements. There are no ballad-like moments or any of the other compromises on "Dead Or Dreaming", and all of the album's songs are strong, powerful and rather complex: they're just filled with an iron non-conformism of real Progressive Metal. At the same time, though, almost all of them are marked by wonderful, kind of symphonic episodes created by solos and interplay between two electric guitars. Excellent passages and interplay between two acoustic guitars and keyboards (including a piano) play an important role in the arrangements of Shallow, Unholy Fields of the Dead, and Dead Or Dreaming (tracks 3, 4, & 8). The fourth track, by the way, is the only song on the album that doesn't contain brutal roars at all. The acoustic guitar passages along with the beautiful, angelic female vocalizes are featured on Elysium Dream and Selling God (tracks 5 & 6). Apart from Shallow, Unholy Fields of the Dead, and Dead Or, that I've mentioned already, keyboard parts are also notable on Absolution of the Soul, Elysium Dream, and Cyber Messiah (tracks 1, 5, & 9).
Summary. By their second album "Dead Or Dreaming", Into Eternity have honed their compositional and performing craft. The influences of Iced Earth and Therion are rather obvious on "Dead Or Dreaming", but it wouldn't be correct to call Into Eternity the followers of those bands, as their own vision is far stronger than the input from their influences. Nevertheless, if one is adventurous enough and appreciates the creation of Iced Earth, Therion, Pain Of Salvation, etc, then Into Eternity is especially a must-have.
VM. January 8, 2001
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