Archetype - Hands Of Time

Year of Release: 1999
Label: Intromental
Catalog Number: n/a
Format: CD
Total Time: 22:15:00

This American band was formed back in 1997 but was going by the name Prototype. They recorded a demo in 1998 but by that time the band was an all instrumental one. In October 1998 the band joined forces with the Danish agency Intromental Management which has quite a few interesting bands in their stall. Both the band and the management agreed that a vocalist would add the final dimension to the music of Archetype. In November 1998 they hooked up with Chyle Vagner (ex-Hate, Public Outcry), who became their new vocalist. In December 1998, Archetype went to the studio to record an EP, Hands Of Time, which was released through Intromental in February 1999. After the recording of this CD, the band teamed up with a second guitarist in Mark Zaim.

This is a mini-CD and has four songs with running time of 22 minutes. First, let me make it clear that this is a very talented band. The music is guitar-based progressive metal, pretty heavy, yet melodic, with intricate rhythm patterns, time changes, incredible instrumental parts/passages and lots of originality. Mostly the songs are fairly up-tempo, but they also slow it down once in a while with some clean, mellow parts. The rhythm section of Chris Matyus (guitars), Keith Zeigler (drums) and Jamie Still (bass) is simply stunning, coming off very tight and precise. These guys pull off complex and strange rhythm patterns and arrangements, not like anything I have heard before. No wonder these guys could release an instrumental demo. The guitars are all over the place, backed by the very busy and creative drumming of Zeigler. The vocals are in the mid to high-register, strong and pretty good, although there is something undefined and unconventional about his voice that might not appeal to everyone. All four songs are very good and accessible, although it might take some spins to really get into it.

The production is good and should not cause any problems for the listener. It's hard to make any comparisons to other bands, as Archetype clearly has found their own style and direction. I'm very excited to see what this band can come up with on their next release, which will hopefully be a full-length. Archetype is full of talent, hope and promise of great things to come. Hopefully they will be picked up and get a deal real soon. If you're a fan of technical progressive metal, this is a must and well worth buying.

[This review originally appeared November 2002 at the ProgPower Online review site -ed.]
Visionary (6:56) / Dissension's Wake (5:33) / Arisen (5:04) / Hands Of Time (4:31)

Chris Matyus - guitars
Jamie Still - bass
Keith Zeigler - drums
Chyle Vagner - vocals

Archetype (demo) (1998)
Hands Of Time (1999)
Dawning (2002/2004)

Genre: Progressive-Power Metal

Origin US

Added: November 1st 2002
Reviewer: Bjørnar Bevolden
Artist website:
Hits: 1184
Language: english


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