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Age of Nemesis: Terra Incognita

Age of Nemesis hail from Hungary, and have been around since the late 1990's, releasing a handful of albums in their native language to mild success. Now that they have hooked up with Magna Carta (the band released their debut on the label, Psychogiest early in 2006), the band are in the midst of getting their music heard on a much bigger scale. Terra Incognita was originally recorded in 2002, but the band, with the help of translater Peter Linka, went back into the studio and re-recorded the album with English lyrics and vocals. Singer Zoltan Kiss sounds right at home here, as his powerful pipes (a mixture of Jon Arch, James LaBrie, and Vanden Plas' Andy Kruntz) add plenty of majesty and passion to these complex and hook laden progressive metal songs.

It's no secret that the music of Dream Theater is a big inspiration to Age of Nemesis, so expect plenty of guitar shredding from Zoltan Fabian and keyboard frenzy from Gyorgy Nagy. The two work very well together, but it's not all about endless solos, as there's plenty of catchy and soaring melodies throughout Terra Icognita. Tunes like "Another Existence" and "Tree of Life" contain muscular riffs, tasty keys, shredding solos, unison passages, intricate rhythms, but most importantly loads of memorable melodies. Many of the tunes are in the 5-8 minute range, so expect some well thought out arrangements and lots of room for jaw-dropping solo spots and interplay. The album is a concept piece, with a story written by guitarist Fabian about a look at the afterlife, centering on the story of a girl who has since passed away.

After you make your way through Terra Incognita a few times, you'll uncover plenty of great progressive instrumentation and clever melodies, making for one very solid progressive metal album. Sure, Age of Nemesis dip into the Dream Theater bag a bit, as well as Symphony X, Vanden Plas, Rainbow, and Deep Purple, but it's all in good fun and a great listen if you like melodic, well played, technical, symphonic prog metal. Glad to see Magna Carta still pumping out some great product.

Track Listing

  1. Tree Of Life
  2. Meeting With The Unbelievable
  3. The Land Of The Light
  4. The Secret
  5. Another Existence
  6. Inner Fire
  7. Inferno
  8. Someone Must Take The Blame
  9. Forgive Me My Foolish Crime
  10. Why?
  11. Bleeding Moon
  12. Plummeting Into Eternity

Added: December 27th 2006
Reviewer: Pete Pardo
Related Link: Magna Carta Records
Hits: 4117
Language: english

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Age of Nemesis: Terra Incognita
Posted by Michael Popke, SoT Staff Writer on 2006-12-27 23:05:08
My Score:

I'm thrilled to see Magna Carta once home to Shadow Gallery, Magellan, Enchant, Tiles and Royal Hunt reaching back to its progressive-metal roots, but do we really need another concept album about dead people? Originally recorded in 2002 in Age of Nemesis' native tongue, Hungarian, Terra Incognita is the English translation of a fictional story by guitarist Zoltan Fabian as told through the diary of an unnamed young woman who recently committed suicide. Unlike 2006's Psychogeist, which contains the six-song conceptual title track, Terra Incognita is a concept album from start to finish. Similar to Psychogeist, however, it is easier to follow than many other album-long tales. It revolves around a dream in which the female protagonist catches a glimpse of the afterlife via an angel arriving in a dream before realizing that all humans possess a little touch of evil back on earth.

Dream Theater, Vanden Plas and Iron Maiden influences abound, which isn't necessarily a bad thing. This is crisp, punchy and complex progressive metal with plenty of hooks, virtuoso musicianship, graphic lyrics and supernatural themes. Vocalist Zoltan Kiss sings with only a slight accent - an improvement over previous outings (some of which were released under the band name Nemesis) - and he's backed by a tight and competent band that's carrying on prog metal's proud traditions.

Hopefully, Terra Incognita is an indication of what's to come from Magna Carta in 2007 and beyond

2004 Sea Of Tranquility
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