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Eyevory

Aurora

Review by Gary Hill

I've gone back and forth on whether to land this under heavy metal or progressive rock. Ultimately, I think prog is the best fit. That said, there is a definite metal edge to a lot of this. I like the female vocals on this. They, along with that metal edge, bring comparisons to epic metal. Still, I the balance is more on the AOR end of prog than it is the metal side. Whether you agree or not, this is quite a strong release.

This review is available in book format (hardcover and paperback) in Music Street Journal: 2019  Volume 6 at lulu.com/strangesound.

Track by Track Review
Unrest
Coming in dramatic, the vocals enter as the song starts to coalesce. After the first vocal section, the rhythm section comes in driving it forward in style. This becomes a powerhouse prog number that has hints of epic metal in the mix. This is dynamic and driving. It's also symphonic in a lot of ways.
Limelight
Speaking of epic metal, this cut is really a full on metal screamer with some proggy and symphonic elements added to the mix.
Roses
Melodic metal and progressive rock merge well on this thing. It's a powerhouse number that has some great musical textures and sounds.
Slowly Falling
The prog end of the spectrum is well-represented on this cut. It's a mellower number that has some hard rocking edges, but is mostly a ballad. I love the guitar fills, but the whole piece works really well.
Forever Endeavour
A driving powerhouse stomper, this is another that's a metallic piece. There are plenty of prog elements here, though. The flute begs comparisons to Jethro Tull. It drops mid-track to a mellower section that is very jazzy. It grows outward gradually with more full prog angles from there. Then, as it approaches the four-minute mark, the metal returns with a screaming hot guitar sound.
Caught Between the Fires
Although this still has plenty of metal in the mix, I'd land this one under prog for sure. A lot of that comes from the cool fusion-like section mid-track.
Follow Me
I love the energy and the hooks on this cut. There is a real soaring vibe to it. While there are still some metal elements at times, this is really full-on prog. It's one of the standout tunes of the set, too. The hard rocking jam later in the track really calls to mind Jethro Tull. While the flute adds to that comparison, even the guitar sound is part of it. This is a dynamic and powerful tune that really works so well.
Soulmates
There is a screaming hot metal jam mid-track, but overall this cut lands into more of an AOR prog zone. I dig the flute solo that comes in later in that mid-track jam. The piece really soars as it works through that movement.
Carry On
Piano brings this into being. The cut works onward with a voice and piano arrangement that is quite pretty. Then after the one-minute mark, it powers out to some driving metallic prog zones as the other instruments join. There is a real soaring element to this piece. The piece hits a peak and then drifts into a smoking hot instrumental movement. It's metallic proggy and really driving. That runs through for a bit and then seems to end. They fire out into screaming hot metallic jamming from there. It has a real tweaked kind of vibe to it, though. Eventually they work out into a more mainstream metallic jam, but there are still hints of space rock and prog in the mix. They eventually make their way back to the song proper for the return of the vocals. The number continues to evolve, though, with some decidedly prog shifts and changes built into it. At nearly 11 minutes of music, this is the epic of the set. They put all that space to good use.
 
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