XYSTUS' 'Equilibrio' Featuring EPICA, ORPHANAGE Members To Receive U.S. Release

Sensory has announced the upcoming release of Dutch progressive metal band XYSTUS' third album, "Equilibrio". Due on September 30, this rock opera was recorded with a 60-piece orchestra and a 30 member choir, and includes guest performances from Simone Simons of EPICA and George Osthoek of ORPHANAGE. With an influx of gothic, progressive and traditional heavy metal influences melding with this dramatic orchestration, fans of EPICA, AYREON and KAMELOT should keep both eyes peeled for this release to strike.

XYSTUS is a Dutch progressive metal band formed in 1999 by drummer Ivo Van Dijk and guitarist/vocalist Bas Dolmans. They enlisted bassist Mark Brekelmans and second guitarist Bob Witsma. Through the course of releasing two albums — 2004's "Receiving Tomorrow" and 2006's "Surreal" — the band built up a buzz and fanbase in The Netherlands. The band supported KAMELOT and made numerous festival appearances. In December 2005, XYSTUS went on a European tour in support of EPICA. The band had even greater ambitions and in 2006 they contacted the Utrechtsch Studenten Concert — the oldest symphony orchestra in The Netherlands. The resulting two-year collaboration resulted in the rock opera "Equilibrio". Conceived as both an actual stage production and studio recording, "Equilibrio" was performed to four sold-out audiences in July 2008 — over 4,000 people witnessed the opera.

Sensory will release the studio recording of "Equilibrio", which features key scenes from the opera. In addition to the 60-piece US Concert orchestra and 30-member choir, XYSTUS enlisted vocal performances from Simone Simons (EPICA), George Osthoek (ORPHANAGE, DELAIN) and Dutch theater veterans Michelle Splietelhof and John Vooijs.

The story of "Equilibrio" revolves around a wanderer named Diegu (Bas Dolmans) who finds himself caught between the forces of good and evil the power mad ruler Primos (John Vooijs) and the altruistic rebel Avelin (Michelle Splietelhof). Primos makes a pact with Death (George Osthoek) take over the world. After unsuccessful efforts by Diegu to mediate between Avelin and Primos, the latter ends up with complete power and the world is thrown out of balance. Diegu is summoned by the godess Lady Sophia (Simone Simons). She watches over Earth and entrusts Diegu with the job reuniting Primos and Avelin in order to restore the balance between good and evil again.

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