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 Symphony X - The Odyssey

Symphony X - The Odyssey This must be the year for prolific progressive rock releases. Symphony X has released a blockbuster recording called “The Odyssey.” It is a concept album inspired by Greek mythology or possible the movie “Jason and the Argonauts,” or something similar. One never knows what inspirations or driving forces an artist has upon completion of important musical works such as this, I can only look so far into what is behind the music itself. I can you tell this much, this band really dug in and made this their ultimate effort in the studio thus far. To coin a phrase…I would call this near death-metal-progressive rock. They key word here is near. Their style is hard to pin down. In a passing moment they sound like a complex Ronnie James Dio band then a mellower progressive rock in a Yes kind of way. It sounds intricate, complicated, and interesting does it not? Well it is certainly all of that and more.

This striving venture is broken down into eight different segments, the eighth track being the most crucial to completing the story. Track 8 has seven individual parts all pieced together and segued to form one daunting composition. Russell Allen, the lead vocalist, has an impressive range. He can get down and dirty with a death growl or sing as smooth and dreamy as Jon Anderson. This band demands that kind of elasticity in a lead singer because their music has so many different atmospheres and textures that change during a song. What is nice to see are the members of the band getting in on the production of their own recording, besides having more control of their work it shows a definite concern for the quality of their product. That I feel is very important in the increasingly competitive field of music.

So there you have it, not a boring track-by-track breakdown, but a synopsis of the entire album and what to expect when you give it a spin yourself. If you are a metal head, prog-rock fanatic, guitar aficionado, or you just like to rock and stomp your feet and bang your fist against the wall, this music will give you the outlet for a complete release of energy, good or bad. The result is you get a therapeutic experience that sounds awesome.

© Keith "MuzikMan" Hannaleck
Posted By: Keith Hannaleck
Genre: Progressive Rock
Record Label: Inside Out

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