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Apex Origin

Beyond a Lifetime

Review by Gary Hill

This band hails from France. They play a type of music that combines heavy metal, hard rock, prog and more. I nearly put this under prog, but ultimately decided that I don't think that fits as well as heavy metal does. Call this what you like, it's an interesting album that is tracked like a rock opera. These guys are talented and manage to create a varied soundscape that generally works well. One note here, while I'm not a fan of all caps titles, that's how they are on the cover, so I've preserved that.

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Track by Track Review

Sound effects create a sea scene that gets this underway. Then keyboards rise up to paint melody and drama. Eventually metallic, rocking sounds take control, but they are still tempered by those keyboards. This is decidedly progressive metal as it drives forward. This has a real melodic prog meets metal vibe in place. It turns into some driving metallic zones later. This is a real powerhouse.


Again effects lead things out here, but this fires out into more of a direct metal approach as soon as that's over. This is very heavy, energetic and crunchy.


There are some sounds that are basically like something from a movie at the beginning of this, Keyboards join, and the vocals come in over that backdrop. This is meaty, but also melodic. It does a good job of merging the metal and prog concepts. The lyrics to this are in French, I think. There is some meaty riffing built into this along with some screamed metallic vocals. We get some sounds at the end of this like a club crowd applauding.




This is a blues jam. I think it sounds like a merging of Led Zeppelin with Joe Bonamassa. I wouldn't really call this metal, but more hard rock. That said, it does have some metallic angles. It also has some smoking hot blues guitar soloing later.


Coming in with keyboards this is another proggy tune. It gets into some seriously heavy and crazed metal zones, too, though. After working through some cool changes, it drops to a melodic movement for the entrance of the vocals. It keeps evolving from there. There are a number of different modes and sections here. It definitely walks a line between progressive rock, heavy metal and hard rock.

Killer riffing opens this with a decidedly metal sound. It gets almost punky after a stop. This is another face on the sound of this group. It's definitely a mainstream metal tune in a lot of ways, but there are some unusual twists at points. There is a cool proggy instrumental break later that gives way to a guitar solo.
While this has a lot of straightforward rock in the mix (think Van Halen), it also has plenty of metallic edge.
This comes in with a fast-paced proggy sound. It quickly shifts to riff driven metal. This is mean, fiery and so cool. While this is less artsy than some of the rest of the music here, it's a killer track that is one of my favorites of the album. There are still some proggy moments on the cut, in some intriguing excursions. It even turns toward funky fusion at one point.

There are sound effects as this gets going, including someone flat lining and the heartbroken reaction of someone else. A melodic, balladic approach brings it in from there. It works out to more of a proggy sound for a powered up movement. It drops to something between those two parts to continue.

This is a powerful balladic cut that has both prog and metal concepts at play. It's packed full of power and emotion.  There is a piano solo section mid-track that really reinforces that prog angle.

Keyboards bring this in, almost feeling like we're in a club. It gets some guitar after a time bringing more of a rock angle to the piece. This is gets into some prog metal zones, but also has more straight-ahead stuff. There is some killer guitar soloing in this tune, and also some intriguing changes. It drops to some effects after a crescendo near the end. Then some keys rise up for a few moments before sounds of the sea return to end it.


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