Apostles Of Defiance
12/27/2003 - Review by: Eric Compton
Eidolon - Apostles Of Defiance 2003 Metal Blade Records
Record number six from these Canadian power thrashers, "Apostles Of Defiance", is a well produced, well played, mature offering. The riffs are catchy, yet slighty more groove oriented than I like. The vocals from Pat Mulock have greatly improved from the rather monotone beginnings of the band. But this review is going to be borderline for me. With so many GREAT metal albums out there right now, I just don't see myself taking the time to make Eidolon a "must have in arms reach" piece of my metal stacks. I own all of their records, and each time I hear they have a new work coming out, I get excited and think, "Okay, here it is. Eidolon are finally going to break through". But they never seem to.
I think a big problem from the get go is the lack of attitude. Eidolon seem to be happy playing riffs for riff's sake, with very little effort put in to make the albums completely over the top. They just go through the motions, and for some metal fans, that really is enough. However, I need more from my listening experience. I need emotion, good songwriting, and I like to be told a story with the song through the ups and downs of melody and tempo. Eidolon just fails to do that for me. Others may disagree.
The record starts out in bombastic format, with the music hitting you in "wall of sound" fashion. Very modern hooks captivate opener "Scream From Within", with crunchy time changing reminiscent of Americans like Overkill and Imagika. "Volcanic Earth" is a real headspinner, being quite possibly the fastest song of their career. Think Annihilator meets Pantera with some atmoshperic death chants thrown in for good measure. "Twisted Morality" opens with a huge guitar solo that sounds very neo-classical before slipping into a mid-pace that just seems to float along, not really putting the emphasis on anything. That is the kind of thing that I don't like about this band. The title track is an absolute monster, with plenty of heavy down-tuned strokes and some angry vocals from Mulock. More paint by number tracks in "The Will To Remain" and "Pull The Trigger", while "Apathy For A Dying World" seems to have a creative mind of its own, offering the only ballad of the album.
"Apostles Of Defiance" is an album that is getting rave reviews from all over the map. Their Canadian homeland has been playing the album on the radio, and there is talk of Eidolon possible getting some MTV exposure or a major tour in 2004. I guess we will see what the future holds. I have a feeling this may be my favorite Eidolon record to date, but that isn't saying much for me. I want to like this, and in time I may. I'm sure that once I can find an Eidolon record I adore, the rest of their albums will finally hit home for me. The problem is finding that first one to like. This one has the biggest chance of hitting my play list rotation.
Great album cover and a bonus remastered disc of the band's debut "Zero Hour" is included. I think most people should check this one out and see what they think. Eidolon has the talent and ability to make an "Album of the Year". Now if they could just put their minds into it.
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