"Humanity Dethroned"


01. Eyes of Defiance
02. No Sign of Life
03. Humanity Dethroned
04. The Forgotten Sin
05. Faded Dreams
06. Salvation Denied
The Apparition Sequence:
07. Prelude
08. Haunted
09. Possessed (We Are One)
10. Closure

RATING: 7/10

Those with a taste for the aggressive end of the prog/power metal spectrum may want to check out DARK EMPIRE's sophomore effort, "Humanity Dethroned". The heaviness factor comes from substantial thrash elements in the riffing, heavy beats, and the occasional death vocal. But make no mistake about it; the album is anchored in melody and bright colors, rather than dissonance and dark hues (for the most part), placing it comfortably within the confines of the prog/power genre.

How does it match up with some of the better known acts playing a similar style, such as fellow New Jersey natives SYMPHONY X? Pretty well, overall. The first few songs ("Eyes of Defiance", "No Sign of Life", and the title track) in particular are real barnstormers, playing to the band's strengths with the SX-esque riffs and solos (courtesy of shredder Matt Moliti), as well as strong chorus melodies. Veteran singer Jens Carlsson (PERSUADER, SAVAGE CIRCUS) gives an edgy performance with a voice that is both husky and more than capable of carrying a tune. That said, his peculiar voice inflection takes a little getting used to. The echoes of SYMPHONY X are brought to the fore on the eight-minute "The Forgotten Sin", which features some very Romeo-like (as in Michael) guitar work, most noticeably during the first main guitar break and solo section. The album rounds out with the four-part "The Apparition Sequence", which includes the obligatory instrumental "Prelude", a tough customer called "Haunted" (employing no less than three vocal styles), the tuneful "Possessed (We Are One)", and the mediocre ballad "Closure".

While the musicianship is beyond reproach and the arrangements intelligently assembled, I did not find the album to be as memorable as I would have expected for reasons that I cannot quite put my finger on. Maybe a handful of the melodies didn't impact strongly enough. But that is only to say that "Humanity Dethroned" is a good prog/power metal album, rather than a great one. Either way, it is without reservation that I can recommend it to fans of the style.


To comment on a BLABBERMOUTH.NET story or review, you must be logged in to an active personal account on Facebook. Once you're logged in, you will be able to comment. User comments or postings do not reflect the viewpoint of BLABBERMOUTH.NET and BLABBERMOUTH.NET does not endorse, or guarantee the accuracy of, any user comment. To report spam or any abusive, obscene, defamatory, racist, homophobic or threatening comments, or anything that may violate any applicable laws, use the "Report to Facebook" and "Mark as spam" links that appear next to the comments themselves. To do so, click the downward arrow on the top-right corner of the Facebook comment (the arrow is invisible until you roll over it) and select the appropriate action. You can also send an e-mail to blabbermouthinbox(@)gmail.com with pertinent details. BLABBERMOUTH.NET reserves the right to "hide" comments that may be considered offensive, illegal or inappropriate and to "ban" users that violate the site's Terms Of Service. Hidden comments will still appear to the user and to the user's Facebook friends. If a new comment is published from a "banned" user or contains a blacklisted word, this comment will automatically have limited visibility (the "banned" user's comments will only be visible to the user and the user's Facebook friends).