EYEFEAR – The Inception Of Darkness

EYEFEAR – The Inception Of Darkness

The Australian metal scene has received accolades in the past few years for its extreme domestic product infiltrating the international label ranks as well as a potent power/ progressive metal market. Eyefear is one of the veterans in the latter category, recording their debut album "Edge of Existence" in 1995 and now releasing their fifth studio platter "The Inception of Darkness". Picking up the pieces after their previous record label Dockyard 1 went out of business, the quintet are able to craft an album at their own pace- making the four year wait well worth the journey as the band literally open up new horizons and facets of their sound with this 8 song effort.

Dark power symphonic progressive metal appears to be the right description for the music and vocal outlook of this album. Nevermore, Braindance, Kamelot, and Serenity come to mind on exemplary tracks such as "Redemption" and "Eyes of Madness". Guest vocals from Be’Lakor George Kosma (death parts) and operatic female inlays from Sarah Parker give the former a triple edge threat against the expressive melodies from main vocalist Danny Cecati- who seems to channel the best of James Rivera, Warrel Dane, and Rob Halford with his multi-octave delivery while injecting forceful emotions throughout. Keyboardist Seb Schneider and bassist Evan Harris deliver a little back and forth progressive tango dance to the opening segments for "Perfect Images" – one of the brighter cuts that will probably have many thinking about classic Dream Theater.

Overall the material has this theatrical or cinematic nature without being too over the top or symphonic in nature- the two part title track for instance has layers of keyboards and dark vocal segments that make you think you are viewing a major tragic scene, the arrangements ebbing and flowing with dynamic guitar riffs, passionate melodies, and persistent double bass (of the mid-tempo and foreboding variety). Guitarist Kosta proves that you can create the right repetitive tension with just a few key notes if they are used in the right way- and not necessarily participate in the latest technical/ shred Olympics to establish your knowledge and skill set in the genre. Rare is the record in this genre that can be complex while also retaining down to earth hooks- and Eyefear appears to be right on target with both.

"The Inception Of Darkness" should capture most people ardently following the power and progressive metal scenes. The best Eyefear album to date, it will be interesting to see how the material goes over in live settings as they gain an opportunity to tour with Nightwish in their home country for January 2013.