Progressive metal has always been iffy to me, on one side I know it’s by far one of the most technical forms of music and requires intense talent, but personally I’ve never been into it. The new album by MEKONG DELTA, entitled In A Mirror Darkly, is no different. The whole album is an overdone array of intense bass line and overcomplicated guitar solos, but with boring vocals overlaying the technicality of it all, the album falls flat.
MEKONG DELTA is a German Prog-Thrash band with almost no thrash, formed in 1985 (from members of thrash band RAGE) when Germany was pumping out huge bands such as DESTRUCTION, SODOM, and KREATOR, MEKONG DELTA kind of fell into obscurity due to their focus towards the progressive instead of thrash. This new album is no different, the intro track is probably the best song, mostly due to it being instrumental, it opens in heavy almost cinematic-like pomp, and after seven minutes or so, one would think “Hey this is pretty sweet”, but once the second track “The Armageddon Machine” kicks in with vocalist Martin Lemar almost talking through it really is a let down. The rest of the album is basically the same thing, each track sounds pretty much the same in every aspect, there’s just nothing memorable about this album. The only track that is remotely thrash would be “Janus”, which has a few sweet riffs in it, but again is squandered by over doing things.
Though fans of the progressive bands such as DREAM THEATER or SONATA ARCTICA may enjoy this, believe me this is not the same as them. It has the feel of SPINAL TAP, a band that should have been done a long time ago but keeps cranking out more and more tune trying something different on each turn. This one is better left off to the die-hard progressive fans. The music is very complicated and talented, but gets overdone with so many weird time signatures, overdone solos, and boring vocals.
For fans of: DREAM THEATER, SONATA ARCTICA, RUSH, YES, SPINAL TAP
STANDOUT TRACKS: “Introduction”, “Janus”
WRITTEN BY SAUCY JACK