Opus Atlantica - Opus Atlantica

Year of Release: 2003
Label: Regain Records
Catalog Number: RR0211-018/RNA1018
Format: CD
Total Time: 35:49:00

Opus Atlantica consists of founder Pete Sandberg on vocals (Silver Seraph, Midnight Sun, Alien), Jonas Reingold on bass and keys (The Flower Kings, Midnight Sun, Karmakanic), Jamie Salazar on drums (The Flower Kings, Midnight Sun) and Johan Reinholdz on guitars (Andromeda).

A little surprise is always welcome and the song I was greeted with after pressing play on my remote control ("Line Of Fire") was a modern symphonic metal one with fast moving, neoclassical keyboards and Symphony X style guitar phrasing. Next track, "Judas Calling" is more of the same, symphonic sounds with an even mixture of Rhapsody meet Symphony X. The subsequent songs present lots of Royal Hunt influences and some not quite so speedy but still symphonic and melody based numbers. For variety, the album also features a power ballad and a Paganini inspired instrumental. A special mention goes to the outstanding performance of Jonas Reingold whose keyboard playing is just absolutely magnificent, and by listening to the songs on offer, comparisons to Royal Hunt, Stratovarius and Majestic come to mind. Also Johan Reinholdz shows that his work with Andromeda was not just a fluke but solid talent and ability. He is putting the Michael Romeo (Symphony X) stamp all over this release, but manages to add his personal note into the solo-sections. The music on offer is not overly original - see all the comparisons - but the interaction and conversing between guitar and keyboard lifts this above most of the clones and that also brings me to Pete Sandberg, whose vocals are presented with great confidence and every note is executed when asked for.

The overall production is very clear and transparent but the sound balance is just below par. The guitars lack body and power which deny any aggression to enter the music, whilst the fast paced double-kicks and drum-roles are not allowed to be heard in a deserving way, let alone the total lack of a bass guitar in the mix. The remaining high vocals of Pete and overly domineering keyboards make this album sound simply too bright and happy. I don't know who produced this CD, but there is a clear lack of bottom end in the music, so next time stop throwing with cotton-balls and hand Jonas a Battle Axe and Jamie some skin punishing Hammers to give justice to song-tiles like "Endless Slaughter," "Sleeping With The Devil" or "Judas Call."

Opus Atlantica has a clear 5 star potential, but with the less then satisfying sound and only 36 minutes worth of music on offer, I couldn't find it in my conscience to credit it better than worthwhile.

Similar To: Symphony X, Royal Hunt, Rhapsody

[This review originally appeared December 2002 at the ProgPower Online review site -ed.]

Line Of Fire / Judas Call / Holy Graal / Prince Of Darkness / Anthem Cello Suite In G Major / Falling Angel / Endless Slaughter / Sleep With The Devil / Edge Of The World

Pete Sandberg - vocals
Johan Reinholdz - guitars
Jonas Reingold - bass, keyboards, programming
Jaime Salazar - drums

Robert Engstrand - keyboards
Johan Gl?ssner - acoustic guitar
Stefan Ingelstrand - backing vocals
Inger Ohl?n - backing vocals

Opus Atlantica (2002/2003)

Genre: Progressive-Power Metal

Origin SE

Added: January 17th 2005
Reviewer: Peter Fundeis
Artist website: www.petesandburg.rules.it
Hits: 1106
Language: english


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