People around the world were very eager for this album the last four and a half years and so it is finally released. It seemed like a century since we last had an album by the masters of progressive power metal Symphony X . Especially when the previous album ‘’Paradise Lost’’ in 2007 was not only one of the best albums of the previous decade, but also it was the album which made them became worldwide known after all these years, with many fans coming to their side and discovering from the beginning what others have been knowing for about two decades: One of the best bands in the whole metal scene (as far as the last decade is concerned, one of the most shaped ones also).
This time things are not as they used to be. ‘’Iconoclast’’ is a big bet and a very risky move by the band, which shows that not only they dare to release a double album about 82 minutes long, but they also become even heavier and faster as years pass by. I guess it works upside down with Symphony X, as we don’t have many examples of bands that when its members have passed their forties and reach their fifties, have the same urge to play that heavy. And heaviness which gets combined with the undisputed technique and skill of each member. Who can’t point out the furious performance of Russell Allen on vocals, the insane guitar work of Michael Romeo or the rhythm section/keyboard section that follows the aforementioned duo in every step?
What else could we ask for? It seems now was the perfect time for such an album to be released, as I think it will mark the setting point for a new beginning for the charismatic quintet. I mean, can it get heavier than that? On the one hand yes, on the other hand if it does, then little will we have to say about where they can get in the future. Now that Symphony X are officialy a great band, they show relieved from a possible stress and this reflects on the album, where it flows like clear water, despite its long duration. The songs are of course diverse in many parts and keep the classic Symphony X trademarks, but this time it may cause even more headbanging than in previous albums. And trust me, you won’t keep your head still while listening to this.
In other cases, putting a nearly eleven minute track on the beginning of an album would be a disaster. In ‘’Iconoclast’’, the opening title track (with a big Dream Theater touch to be honest) marks the route for eleven more tracks to follow, highlighted in tunes such as ‘’Dehumanized’’, ‘’Bastards Of The Machine’’, ‘’Heretic’’, ‘’Electric Messiah’’, ‘’Light Up The Night’’ and of course, the video track ‘’End Of Innocence’’ among others. What gives an extra push is that the second cd of the release is even heavier than the first one. I suggest that fans should get the double limited edition pack because the songs not included in the standard jewel case edition are really great and it would be a great pity to miss them. At least you’ll know that your investment will be worth it totally.
The only problem fans might find is the inevitable perfection of the previous two albums (‘’The Odyssey’’ and ‘’Paradise Lost’’), which makes ‘’Iconoclast’’ sounding not so perfect as we had started getting used by Symphony X’’ and they might think that it’s a step lower. That doesn’t mean it is not one of the best albums of 2011, which fulfills its difficult tusk without tiring the listener. It’s an album that any other band would get a 10/10 for releasing it. But unfortunately Symphony X is not any other band, they are the leaders of the progressive scene the last years and that’s why they became one of the most highlighted bands of the current evolution of the whole metal scene. A perfect warm up for the upcoming Dream Theater album. Let’s see which one is going to be best, though it doesn’t matter that much.
|Track List||Line Up|
02.End Of Innocence
04.Bastards Of The Machine
06.Children Of A Faceless God
07.When All IS Lost
|Russell Allen – Vocals
Michael Romeo –Guitars
Michael Lepond – Bass
Michael Pinella – Keyboards
Jason Rullo – Drums