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Beyond Twilight - "The Devil's Hall Of Fame"
Massacre Records 2001

Well, I know that I'm very late with this review, but if this release of Scandinavian Progressive band's debut wouldn't be something so special, I surely wouldn't touch it. I'm so late due to a chronical and comical reason, that in Slovenia everything that sounds metal still hardly finds it's way to the music shops. Funny but this CD was surely imported by accident. A happy accident.

Band's release was done in late summer of 2001 just before Bush joined "The Devil's Hall Of Fame". As if the band suspected, that there was something going awfully wrong on planet Earth. A band's prophecy? A great message was launched, a complete revelation. Don't get too serious in receiving band's message because it can change your way of life completely. A safe life of electrical insects with microchips implanted, dedicated to serve all institutions, to die in awful pain on the army's battlefields forever etc... We are safe here in our glass prisons, grabbing material and never mind of what we're leaving behind, believing in the only truth of new era's gods called scientists. This is called the blackest day, when we will lay down our weapons due to our fear that has been implanted. The truth will be revealed and will kill all the weak implants who couldn't handle it. God has been invented due to our fear, projected (and it still is) by "illuminates" and "New World Order". There is no God, there is no religion. All that and more is revealing to a guy with code number 29031972 (date of birth) who succeeded to enter his own brain with computer's help. Inside his mind, he touches his virtual god, a universal truth. He finds out that he no longer needs to live in a material world that surrounds him. And he's waiting for a judgment day to finally free his soul and leave this physical body shell forever. A life is a grand illusion.

This conceptual work was genially done by author and band's leader Finn Zieler (keyboards). Music is composed mostly in minors. Psychedelic parts are perfectly combined with more melodic motives ("Shadowland"). Also heavy riffing raises atmosphere and where we have dramatic conclusions, keyboards and guitar strike as one producing a grandiose heavy sound.

But if Finn wouldn't invite Jörn Lande to join on vocals, a lot of his work would be useless. Jörn's wild screams are expressing real 29031972's pain and suffering on travel through his own brain. Jörn also sings through breathing (as Coverdale or Plant in years after he left Zepps). So alive, non-compromise with full force and energy. And every time you put CD on, you can feel as you were trapped inside the skin of 29031972. Jörn Lande is undoubtedly one of the best metal vocalists of the new generation.

Lyrics are well combined with music motives which fit together perfectly. The entire " The Devil's Hall Of Fame" atmosphere reminds me of choking moisture in the air, foggy, rainy unpleasance that is always obscured by clouds in "Blade Runner" movie for example. We have exclusively mid-tempo songs with a lot of diverse rhythms included. Guitar mostly follows the rhythm section. Guitar solos are a rear thing. But Anders Kragh shows immediately in the opener "Hellfire" what means Swedish school of electric guitar. Here we can find marvelous speed drive of Ander's filigranic arpeggios done by his soft finger grip.

So this is Progressive at it's best. Made in new dimensions. A real refreshment and real force, full of boneshaking energy.

Author:   Ale¹

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