New Era

01. Silver Ending
02. Share Your Energy
03. Kingdom Of Sand
04. Pull The Brake
05. Seen It All Before
06. Your Desire
07. Voyager 9
08. Simplicity…Huh…
09. Before Your Eyes
10. Violet Eye
11. Into The Unknown
12. Heroes

Mike Andersson – Vocals
Patrik Svärd – Guitar
Stefan Rosqvist – Guitar
Håkan Nyander – Bass
Fredrik Joakimsson - Drums

Cloudscape (2004)
Crimson Skies (2006)
Global Drama (2008)


Produced by Micko Twedberg at Roastinghouse Studio

Released 31/7-2012
Reviewed 31/7-2012


Cloudscapes are something I pay lots of attention to when shooting landscapes, it is also something that makes or breaks a good landscape photograph. The stylistics in imagery is something that seems to be going for this band as they do have a really nice cover artwork so maybe this name has something to do with them enjoying good looking skies. Or maybe not, they have received a good reception so far for this album which is their fourth although it seems like all of these reviewers are also fans since earlier and on the internet which we all know is a very reliable source for an objective review. I found one review that was more neutral though and he figured that they maybe have been overtaken by the brilliant Norwegian bands of Circus Maximus and Pagan’s Mind, he actually said that they were playing in different leagues coming to quality. I had no relation whatsoever to Cloudscape (other than the one in the sky) before getting this album so it will be looking at it from a fresh perspective.

And what I notice is that they play a sort of progressive metal that is quite common, probably the most common in the progressive metal genre. Very melodic and slightly complex kind of like said Circus or bands like Evergrey or such bands. They do possess good musical skills on all accounts, the singer is excellent and the songs are really well performed and produced. They are however strangely uncreative to be a progressive band, they do not really progress in that they invite you to a landscape unbeknownst to man before and that is something progressive bands should do. Sure this landscape can be in a familiar sort of terrain or territory but it should still feel new and exciting and albeit Cloudscape does play an exciting kind of music, their interpretation of this music isn’t really that exciting.

I think I have heard everything on this album before, I distinctly get that impression when hearing this album. And I know I have never heard Cloudscape before, so why do I get this impression? I think of other bands and other songs, it is like they have stolen parts from other band’s works. Just ripped them off and placed them in their own songs because I spend more time listening to this album trying to find out which band and song that the song I play at the moment reminds me off rather than thinking about how good this band is and they are good that is the strange thing about it. Another strange thing is how I find this album so good when listening to it but when it ends I cannot remember a single melody line or chorus and that is something I always do from any album I hear, but not this one. Take Board of Aves which I am writing about next, the first song on that album I recall vividly and that album is not really as well made as this one, not even close, it is better though as it has more personality.

New Era hardly ushers in a new era for the progressive metal, unless progressive metal is to join the ranks of heavy metal in that most material will be recycled albums with new labels and names which I hope is not the case. It is a well made album that their old fans seems to really like but I see no reason picking it above Circus Maximus, Pagan’s Mind, Atlantyca, Everygrey or any other interesting progressive metal band. So if you like Cloudscape You’ll probably like this one, if you haven’t heard them before and is curious about their work you are most likely better off looking at one of their earlier works because if this is their best work to date they have a long way to go. They know how to perform and their album is a good one to listen to but they really should try and add a little of themselves in it as I never found recycling particularly interesting.

Wow, for some reason this review got a bit more of a negative tone than I was aiming for, it is not really that bad as I have enjoyed listening to this album despite everything I just wrote. With that said though, I will most likely forget about this album now that I have written this review but that probably only means that I have too much music to listen to.



Label: Roastinghouse/Germusica
Three similar bands: Atlantyca/Evergrey/Symphony X
Rating: HHHHHHH (4/7)
Reviewer: Daniel Källmalm

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