Walkabout is the debut album from Italy's Mirrormaze, another in a fine line of solid progressive metal bands coming out of that country in recent years. Clearly influenced by Dream Theater, Vanden Plas, Evergrey, Queensryche, and Redemption, Mirrormaze aren't going to win any originality awards, but Walkabout is certainly an enjoyable album full of catchy melodies and expert instrumentation.
The 9-minute "Lost in a Belief" gives you a good indication of what this band are all about, as they inject a boatload of soaring vocals and melodies over some really nice proggy arrangements. There's more of a metal attack on the blistering "Joke", while those into complex prog-metal with symphonic backing will love "Earn Your Answers". On the excellent "Deeper Signs", Mirrormaze even enlists Fates Warning/Redemption singer Ray Alder for some passionate guest vocals alongside Fabio D'Amore. In fact, D'Amore's vocals are one of the reasons to really seek out this CD, as he's got a fine voice and really helps elevate these solid if not standard prog-metal songs. He snarls like Andy B. Franck from Brainstorm on the crunchy title track ( a song that has some neat guitar & keyboard solos), and the near 10-minute closer "Broken Soul" brings about the CDs most dramatic & adventurous arrangements, allowing D'Amore to sing to the heavens.
Walkabout is actually a really good album, and if you don't mind the fact that Mirrormaze haven't really developed their own identity quite yet, there's a lot of kick ass progressive metal to be enjoyed on this one. Definitely a band to keep a close eye on.
- Earn Your Answers
- Vicious Circle
- Lost in a Belief
- Deeper Signs
- Broken Soul 9:27