Illumion, The Waves, 2012
Although it is the first encounter for me with Dutch progressive rock band Illumion (thanks to revived label Freia), this is in fact their second album. Their first, Hunting For Significance is still on my want list. And this CD might just raise their ranking…
So, Dutch and progressive, I hear you thinking, female lead voice? Yes. So it´s Gothic then? Nope. When I say progressive, that is what I mean (okay, not that I am very good at genre tagging, but still). And not only for the use of genre typicals like odd time signatures, ferocious riffing, and some serious shredding from Eveline van Kampen (yes gents, you read it right, it is a lady and she beats the shit out of many dudes out there).
No it is also progressive in the sense that some more obscure instruments are used. Not only more or less mainstream ones like a trumpet, but what to think of the Chinese Zither, the Chinese Spike Fiddle or a mandolin? And I like it.
Another thing there is to like about this album are the way the keyboards are used. They add a more ambient feel to several parts here and there and thus contribute a lot to the dynamics on this CD. And dynamic is a key feature, which I happen to like. One more thing to add, pay attention to the bass work from Peter Boer. Especially his fretless work is awesome! He also produced the album by the way, so they are pretty self supporting this way. If you are into progressive rock and metal, I strongly recommend checking this out, it will not disappoint.