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Aeon Zen: Transversal

I am constantly impressed with the musical ability that I hear, and Aeon Zen can be added to that list. There is no question as the opening “Twilight“ gets moving that this band has chops. As a musician, I feel that the song needs to be impactful and grab your ear, but I also love hearing good musicians play. You get both on Transversal, which seems to cross multiple genres with relative ease. The opening “Twilight” features a subtle acoustic guitar intro, leading into dramatic vocals (but very well done), with a sudden burst into metal with shredding guitar work, and settles back into its acoustic beginnings. Aeon Zen is adept at quick changes in mood, time signatures, and I love the little curveballs they throw into the arrangements, all of a sudden the music goes a bit sideways (in a good way) and it’s not often you are caught off guard anymore. The music is for the most part heavy, I hear Dream Theater on occasion and Symphony X and Haken are also listed as comparisons.

Even though the guitar playing (Rich Gray / Alistair Bell)is what really drew me in, the keyboards create a lot of the mood and texture to the songs, but also are given ample time for a few wailing solos. In addition, Vadim Pruzhanov (DragonForce) and Matt Shepherd (ex-Aeon Zen) lend their guitar prowess on two tracks. Lead and background vocals are very well done, I get a bit of Dennis DeYoung (Styx) from lead vocalist Andi Kravljaca. After having discussed their technical prowess, let’s give main songwriter Rich Gray a pat on the back, as the songs have great hooks, and they could easily be dominated by the technical prowess of the band, but everything works together. The disc is only a little over 30 minutes, but I like the less is more, there is no filler, and the band made the statement they wanted, win win in my book.

Transversal, despite being split across 10 tracks, is designed to be listened to as one song, just as it was written as a single piece continuous of music. It serves as their final, epic release as Aeon Zen end on a high and ambitious note. “ Per the press release, this is the bands swan song, the band wanted to make a final powerful musical statement and move on, they definitely achieved their goal. This is scheduled to be released on 9/24/21.

Track List:
Transversal (30:03)
I: Twilight (4:04)
II: A New Day (3:54)
III: Chase The Sunrise (4:53)
IV: 10.000 Eyes (2:15)
V: Force of Fire (1:10)
VI: Lines Redrawn (1:16)
VII: Purgatory Rechristened (3:51)
VIII: Twilight Reprise (0:47)
IX: It Ends As It Began (4:48)
X: Forever (3:05)

Added: July 25th 2021
Reviewer: Eric Porter
Related Link: Band Website
Hits: 1120
Language: english

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