Assessing an album like Project Elimi is no easy task. Fans of obscure progressive power metal will definitely want to check out this young German group - there's no doubt that Tangent Plane have plenty of goods to offer. Unfortunately, these rewards are often difficult to see on Project Elimi, the band's second full-length effort. Don't get me wrong; this is a competent album that should satisfy fans of the genre. Unfortunately, a few crippling flaws add up to a less-than-satisfying experience for me. Project Elimi's general lack of jaw-dropping moments and Tangent Plane's decidedly derivative approach make for an experience unworthy of a near-80 minute playing time. I was excited about this album when I first received the promo in my inbox, but even after multiple spins, no "magic" has shined through. There's surely an audience (and a fairly large one, at that) for Tangent Plane, but they will need to definitely look into improving their compositional talents before this reviewer is truly impressed.
The music on Project Elimi is progressive power metal with nods towards the early variant of the scene. Expect nods in the direction of Dream Theater, Vanden Plas, Fates Warning, and even hints of Symphony X. Symphonic keyboards, heavy guitar riffs, and epic song structures dominate this hefty 76-minute album. With such an intimidating running length, some filler is almost a guarantee. Many songs are close to the 10 minute mark, and the final track, "Project Elimi", is a monster epic at 22:17. Solid riffs are present throughout, but a good portion of the album comes across as a bit generic and uninspired. Project Elimi isn't at all without highlights - "Deadborn" leaves me speechless every time. This is simply one of those albums that's filled with high-quality musicianship, crystal clear production, and technically excellent music, yet it often leaves me cold. I can only hope that more memorable songwriting will only develop in time from this talented group.
Tangent Plane is a group of talented musicians with tons of potential, but Project Elimi is ultimately an underwhelming experience. I wouldn't at all be surprised if a future effort from Tangent Plane really knocks my socks off - they have the chops to pull it off. As of now, the band's second full-length leaves a bit to be desired. If talented musicianship from unexpected sources is what you're in search for, Project Elimi is worth much more than the 2.5 stars I'm giving it. If you're looking for an original progressive power metal album with stunning compositions... maybe next time.
1. One Month In Real-Time 07:44
2. One With The Lies 05:23
3. Ice Age 07:03
4. Borrow Me Your Dullness 09:39
5. Do You Live 04:46
6. Deadborn 09:46
7. One Moment And The Murder After 09:23
8. Project Elimi 22:17
Total Time: 76:01