Redemption: Translation of my reviews updated with the last 2 studio albums

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Redemption: Translation of my reviews updated with the last 2 studio albums

Postby GaetanL » Mon Aug 27, 2018 4:52 pm

Long time ago I posted the translation of my reviews for the band Redemption until the album "This Mortal Coil". I have updated my document with the translation of the last 2 studio albums ("The Art Of Loss" and "Long Night's Journey Into Day"). My reviews are like linked together. If I have said something once for an album, I may not repeat it even if it's still apply for another album. So I decided to repost them all. The French version is of course available on my website.

Redemption (2003)
I find this album much less good than the next. “The Fullness Of Time” is so good that this beginning of Redemption is rather ordinary when we compares it to the second. This project of Nicolas Van Dyk gathers members of several bands including the singer of Fates Warning, Ray Alder. But on this album, he is only an invited singer on two songs. He is the main singer starting from the second album. Here, the main singer Rick Mythiasin (Taraxacum/ex-Steel Prophet) is rather cold and at the image of the music hardly emotional and not very melodic. The nearest comparison on the level of the style of the music of this album would be the beginnings of Fates Warning with John Arch. But that sounds slightly more modern. Moreover, on the level of the style of the voice, the timbre of voice of Rick Mythiasin is quite close to John Arch.

The Fullness Of Time (2005)
I adore! Ray Alder (Fates Warning) is now the main singer. This album is filled with emotion and touches me. Much more melodic and warm that the first album. The character who is rather desperate and broken finds all his pieces in the final (IV. Transcendence) of the song of the same title of the album. The music and the voice transmit so well the emotion to us that we rises with him when he realizes that he is now a better person for having known and overcome the pain. Whereas I find that the first album rather has a style (on the level of the music and voice) resembling the period of Fates Warning with John Arch, here the style of the music approaches more the period of Fates Warning with Ray Alder. But it is a little more power metal (while being progressive). On the level of the style of the voice you will understand that it is identical! If you like this period of Fates Warning with Ray Alder, “The Fullness Of Time” is a must have. I must add that it is an outstanding album for me and I qualify it an essential classic. Furthermore, this is my favorite album of the 00s.

The Origins Of Ruin (2007)
Since the album “The Fullness Of Time”, Redemption became a band of reference. All the progressive metal fans on the planet should have the album “The Fullness Of Time”. Now that you have it, I can compare “The Origins Of Ruin” with the previous album. On the level of the style of the music and voice, it is pretty similar (although the two long epic songs from the previous album are considerably longer than the two 9 minutes songs). On the level of the lyrics, they touch me also but a little less in general than the previous album. Although some passages touch me as much. Before knowing the album “The Fullness Of Time”, I brought a certain importance to the lyrics but I did not think that they could make such an enormous difference. The lyrics of the album “The Fullness Of Time” bring a new dimension to the music. It is also the case with the album “The Origins Of Ruin”. To that are added extraordinary dynamic progressive music and a voice full with emotion. All these ingredients create conditions such that “The Origins Of Ruin” is also an essential classic. You must now have this one in addition to the previous!

Snowfall On Judgment Day (2009)
Difficult to find a weakness to this album. The only thing that disappoints me a bit, is that the more technical passages that challenge us are gone. The album is thereby less progressive. Besides that, all the ingredients that I have already described in the previous 2 reviews are present. The Dream Theater singer, James Labrie participates on the song “Another Day Dies”. “Snowfall On Judgment Day” is an essential album!

This Mortal Coil (2011)
The titles of the Bonus CD of the limited edition that you see in the dropdown list are covers of Elton John, Starship, Toto, Journey, UFO and Tori Amos.

The album "The Fullness Of Time" arrived at the right time in my life. If I had not experienced what I experienced, I couldn’t have understood the profound meaning of the lyrics. In October 2008, Nicolas Van Dyk, the main songwriter and guitarist of Redemption was diagnosed suffering from a form of blood cancer supposedly incurable. I consider myself lucky to have never received a medical diagnosis of imminent death, because I imagine it must be terrible. By cons, in the difficult moments that I experienced, I realized that I could have died. The album "This Mortal Coil" is about the feelings experienced when we saw death up close.

There are texts in the Redemption albums that are with me every day. For example, "Now I know, I've got to believe.", taken from the last song of the album "The Fullness Of Time". In fact, I understood that before reading it after what I experienced. But when I read it, it felt good to know that someone else understood it as well. As I have written elsewhere on my site, the word "faith" in my opinion can be defined in one word, that is to say, "believe". Having faith is vital. Before the hard times that I lived, I had faith but I did not know it because I had never been close to losing it completely. It’s the same for health and life, we may not realize we have it and how fragile and precious it is because we have never been close to losing it. The album "This Mortal Coil" is also about what is remembered of this experience and to enjoy life now.

Neil Kernon produced and recorded the album with Nick. To my ears, using my audio equipment, I would say that production is relatively close to excellent but does not reach it because of some passages of few seconds. Although we perceive a slight difference in sound compared to the previous albums, I think they could have dared a little more. Especially since Neil Kernon participated in the 80s in the production of the album "Rage For Order" by Queensrÿche considered a classic and an album with a very special sound.

The more technical passages that challenge us that were not present in the previous album are back! I love for example the song "Dreams From The Pit" that meets my expectations regarding this. I would say that the progressive level has returned to the level of the album "The Origins Of Ruin".

In terms of the lyrics, when I read “I've returned to the road that I was on before this happened seems so long ago” from the song "Departure Of The Pale Horse", it is as if the lyrics were reached a level unmatched until now ... Let's say a critical mass of coincidences ... Subsequently, there was turbulence in my life. I am very happy that the pale horse whose rider is called "Death" has left Nick as we read in the last line ("And the pale horse departs") from the lyrics of the last song which is entitled "Departure Of The Pale Horse".

If you like Redemption, "This Mortal Coil" is a must!

The Art Of Loss (2016)
After Sensory and Inside Out, Redemption signs now with the Metal Blade label. I find here that the production is better than "This Mortal Coil". On the other hand, in terms of the quality of the compositions (music and lyrics), I prefer "This Mortal Coil". Although "The Art Of Loss" is still excellent. Depending on your personal experience and your tastes, it is quite possible that "The Art Of Loss" reaches you more than "This Mortal Coil". But for me, this is not the case.

Several guest guitarists participate in the album: Simone Mularoni (DGM, Lalu), Chris Poland (Megadeth, Damn The Machine), Marty Friedman (Megadeth) and Chris Broderick (Jag Panzer, Megadeth). On vocals, guest singer John Bush (Anthrax, Armored Saint) participates in the song "Love Reign O'er Me" which is a cover of The Who.

I like the spiritual aspect of Redemption's lyrics. In the chronicle of Dreamlost's "Outer Reality" album, I told you about the movie Dragonfly with Kevin Costner released in 2002 and the bonus that comes with the DVD of the movie. Here, I just want to mention another spiritual movie that I like. This is the movie "The Celestine Prophecy" released in 2006. The bonus of the DVD of the film is also interesting. The theme of critical masses of coincidences is even more developed compared to the movie Dragonfly.

Speaking of bonuses, the limited European edition of "The Art Of Loss" contains a Bonus CD with different mixes and a song with the participation of Parker in singing, the daughter of Nicolas Van Dyk. The song is titled "Say Something" and is a cover of A Great Big World.

Long Night's Journey Into Day (2018)
The singer Ray Alder (Fates Warning) is no longer there! He was replaced by Tom Englund (Evergrey). His voice is a little different than with Evergrey. I would say it is softer. I like his voice as much as Ray Alder's. There is also a new keyboard player. The other members, as well as the guest guitarists Simone Mularoni (DGM, Lalu) and Chris Poland (Megadeth, Damn The Machine), present on the previous album, remained.

In my review of the album "This Mortal Coil" of 2011, I wrote this: "Although we perceive a slight difference in sound compared to previous albums, I think they could have dared a little more." But in the end, this remark is a little paradoxical for me. When I think about it, I have a preference for a rather classic sound. So finally for the album "This Mortal Coil", I think they went far enough. Yes for changes, but without losing the classic Redemption sound. I think that's what we have here with this album. There is of course the change of singer that makes it sounds different. In addition, I hear subtle changes in the music that I could not describe in words.

I read the lyrics of this album when I first listen! What I rarely do, but with Redemption, it's different. You know how important I am to the lyrics of Redemption. Once again, lyrics touched me in this album. The recipe is simple. Nicolas Van Dyk, the principal composer and guitarist of Redemption, writes lyrics that make us feel that he understands our situation or our pain. This is accompanied by a positive message. How do we call someone who understands us and has a positive influence on us? A friend! The album "The Fullness Of Time" of 2005 is the first album in my life where I felt a kind of friendship with the composer. Nicolas Van Dyk does not compose music in an ivory tower! He is close to his fans, as for example in the Internet discussion groups. He calls his fans his friends, which is very cool and consistent with his writing style! Nick calls me his friend, so I'll do the same with joy! Nick, you are my friend and I care about you!

Now, how do we call someone who listens to us and over whom we have some positive influence? A friend! Since my trip to Spain in the summer of 2005 when I met the band Ebony Ark, Nick is the number one on my list of artists I would like to meet. Unfortunately, even if the opportunity arose, it would be rather utopian to believe that I would have a deep discussion with him. Could it be that knowing my personal experience and understood me in real life have a positive influence on him? For the moment, I hope to have a positive influence on Nick by supporting his band in different ways.

I really like this Redemption album and I consider it essential! The song "New Year's Day" is a cover of U2. The limited European edition of "Long Night Journey Into Day" contains 2 bonus tracks.
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