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Andromeda: Playing Off the Board (DVD)

With three releases under their belt, the time was right for Swedish progressive metal upstarts Andromeda to release their first DVD, titled Playing Off the Board. Recorded live in Poland at the charming Slaski Theatre on their Chimera tour, this is a stunning & powerful 90 minute performance, expertly shot with pristine audio, and the band firing on all cylinders. Seeing as Andromeda only have three albums from which to pull songs from, they decided to take tunes from all three and create a really well-rounded set list. Older classics like "In the Deepest of Waters", "Reaching Deep Within", "Enclyclopedia", and the killer instrumental "Chameleon Carneval" mix well with newer songs like "The Hidden Riddle", and "Periscope". The musical skills of guitarist Johan Reinholdz, keyboard player Martin Hedin, drummer Thomas Lejon, and bassist Fabian Gustavsson mesmerize on each and every song, whether delivering a crushing & complex metal epic, or a symphonic & melodic prog masterpiece. Lead vocalist David Fremberg is quite a talent as well, equally adept at smooth, melodic passages or a more high pitched metal wail. While the crowd is pretty subdued (probably more of a prog audience than metal fans I'm sure), they do show some loving appreciation towards the end of the set, and it's obvious that the band had a blast playing this show, never losing a step despite the camera crew's presence. Tight, melodic, and powerful, just what you want from a top notch progressive metal band.

There are lots of bonus features included here, such as interviews with the band as they talk about their history (fascinating how they rebuff the Dream Theater comparisons), and plenty of tour footage as they traveled across Europe in 2006. Of course, with the tour footage comes the goofball beer-drenched down-time, and there's plenty of that to laugh at as well. It all makes for a quality package from one of prog-metal's best bands.

Track Listing
1) Periscope
2) In the Deepest of Waters
3) Two Is One
4) The Hidden Riddle
5) Chameleon Carneval
6) Inner Circle
7) Eclipse
8) In the End
9) Enclyclopedia
10) Reaching Deep Within
11) The Words Unspoken
Bonus Material-interviews, rehearsal footage, Euepean, Dutch, & Poland tour tales, old live footage, biography, discography, photo gallery, & more

Added: September 3rd 2007
Reviewer: Pete Pardo
Related Link: Andromeda Website
Hits: 2457
Language: english

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