Requiem for the Indifferent

01. Karma
02. Monopoly On Truth
03. Storm The Sorrow
04. Delirium
05. Internal Warfare
06. Requiem For The Indifferent
07. Anima
08. Guilty Demeanor
09. Deep Water Horizon
10. Stay The Course
11. Deter The Tyrant
12. Avalanche
13. Serenade Of Self-Destruction

Mark Jansen - vocals, guitar
Simone Simons - vocals
Coen Janssen - keyboards
Isaac Delahaye - guitar
Ariën Van Weesenbeek - drums
Yves "Yvel" Huts - bass

2003: The Phantom Agony
2005: Consign to Oblivion
2007: The Divine Conspiracy
2009: Design Your Universe


Produced by Epica with Sascha Paeth at the Gate Studio in Wolfsburg, Germany

Released 9/3-2012
Reviewed 16/2-2012

Epica bandsite

nuclear blast

Dutch band Epica has always been an interesting band to me but where fellow dutch symphonic metal band After Forever succeeded in keeping a balance between the grande and the metallic I think Epica has always been going a little bit over the top and therefore never been as interesting as their fellow dutchmen. Otherwise Epica is a bit of a spinoff from After Forever considering Mark Jansen’s part in founding both these bands. This time they have gone for telling the story of a world where things are not right, a world where greed and selfishness takes precedent more often than not, and how the ordinary man has nothing to come by, the indifferent people I guess you could tell them, lost in the technology just like the Borg of Star Trek, mindless drones. Maybe they weren’t looking at you in that way but I am, at least for fun, the band tells us and you to open your eyes and start looking further than that bacterial colony that is called a touchscreen which you all love more than anything in the world. I think the album has a rather striking cover art which is something that also reflect the content of the album with the polarity between extremes and how the organic world meets the technology, an exciting concept but that is only part of the equation.

The music is like it has been done before on this the fifth studio album by Epica, the symphonic metal with the beauty versus beast concept they apply in the vocal department. I was thinking of what in the fellow dutch and very similar band After Forever’s discography that was close and Invisible Circles is actually something that springs to mind when listening to this album. This album sports a more straightforward approach than before, it is a bit more focused on the vocals and on the metal stuff which does not really take away from the sense of grandeur but still adds a little more power to the songs. Simone and Mark sings as before, nothing has changed in that department but I would say that the overall impression is that of a more mature band than we have heard before. The album is according to Isaac, guitarist in the band, one that you should at least hear ten times to really be able to take in as there is much going on and that is for sure, the music is quite complex and has a lot of elements in it. He also says that Epica makes albums and not songs which is something I think is great as I enjoy albums much more than songs. This particular album is seventy two minutes long and has thirteen tracks.

I would say that this is the best album that Epica has made to date and the first time I don’t feel as though they are the younger sibling of After Forever, this time they have made an album that can challenge the best by After Forever. The opening track Monopoly on Truth reminds me a lot of Monolith of Doubt from After Forever’s Decipher, not in style but in the sense of being something fresh and exciting and it is a wonderful song that is not only the best on this album but amongst the best songs I have heard during the latter years. Earlier Epica albums have been built up to a climax in the end of the album with an energetic beginning which made the middle being often with ballads and quite mellow which made the albums feel long and a bit sleepy. For this album they have slightly altered the concept and now has two acts where each one ends in a climactic way, the first act ends in the title track and the last one ends in the ending track and that is something that creates a more dynamic feel and a better balance on the album. I think this album is much more solid than what they have done before and it also retains my interest in a better way than any of the earlier Epica albums have done. A bit unfortunate it is though, that there is nothing that really manages to rival the first song on the album, but I guess you cannot have it all.

In the end I think this is an album for Epica to be proud of, it may not be the timeless classic that Decipher from the countrymen I keep mentioning is but it is not that far off, it is a solid good album that manages to be entertaining for most of 72 minutes and that is a feat in itself. It is also an album you have to give its time and also see as a whole and not a collection of songs, and I can assure you that it lasts for more than twenty play throughs as that is how many I have managed before this review. An album well worth looking into and the best one in this kind of style since Invisible Circles in 2004, so a great album with no real weaknesses.




Label: Nuclear Blast/Warner
Three similar bands: After Forever/Tristania/Sirenia
Rating: HHHHHHH (5/7)
Reviewer: Daniel Källmalm

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Story of Jade - The Damned Next Door
Beaten to Death - Xes and Strokes
Necronomicon - Invictus

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