Hailing from Milan Italy, the band Exilia brings you a very diversified or unfocused album depending upon your point of view. Ranging from ferocious metal to more laid back progressive music, the band seems to try and be everything to everyone. While there is nothing wrong with broadening your horizons, sometimes a band can go too far with the concept. If you try to appeal to such a wide audience, it will ultimately cause those that like one version of the band to be turned off by their forays into other genres that are too far from their home base.
Such is the case with Exilia. They may be able to cross over from the metal background they come from with a very commercial sound at times, but the hard core fan is going to wonder just what is going on. They would have been much further ahead to split this one up with a metal disc and a lighter one that falls somewhere in the prog metal field. I would have enjoyed it much more that way.
For the first half of the disc, Exilia is the fire breathing metal monster that arises in the opening track "Phoenix". The band gives you a very distinctive sound with the raspy screams and vocals of Masha Mysmane leading the way. She has a dynamic voice and even when she turns to a more conventional style, her clean singing shows that she is a special talent.
Other than the misguided cover of Phil Collins' "In The Air Tonight", I cannot say that there is a bad song on here. The group is musically tight and they do know how to play! Vocally, I was blown away by Masha and her throaty style. She can sing the phone book and make it interesting.
All in all, I liked this disc a lot and look forward to what they might have in store in the future. This is their fourth release and it shows a phenomenal growth from their past efforts. I like diversity and this band certainly has that. All of what they do, they do well. In fact, there is some very cool music on this disc! Just be prepared when you go from the heavy as hell "Are You Breathing?" to the power ballad of the title track "My Own Army". They spread it out in a way that even a group like Opeth might wonder what is going on.
2. Are You Breathing?
3. The Hunter
4. I'm Perfect
5. Across The Sky
6. Emptiness Of You
7. Far From The Dark
9. No Destination
10. In The Air Tonight
11. My Own Army