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Meden Agan - "Erevos Aenaon" (CD)

Meden Agan - "Erevos Aenaon" CD cover image

"Erevos Aenaon" track listing:

1. Black Sky (2:47)
2. All Seems Lost (3:30)
3. Blinded By Faith (3:29)
4. Tribute to Life (3:35)
5. Dissolve Into Grey (4:28)
6. Nemesis (5:21)
7. From the Ashes of Sin (3:21)
8. Erevos Aenaon (3:30)
9. Universe Unseen (4:09)
10. From the Ashes of Sin (Extended Version) (6:08)
11. Dissolve Into Grey (6:33)
12. Tribute to Life (Extended Version) (7:35)

Reviewed by on October 4, 2011

"...the band has also braved the sea of symphonic acts to stand apart and carve a name alongside the greats in the upper echelon of the genre."

Without a doubt Meden Agan has come up with a chimerical album of symphonic metal with "Erevos Aenaon." Sailing the seas of symphonic metal in 2011 is akin to scaling the wall of water on the Bering Sea with little more than an inner tube. After treading water for the past five years, releasing one full-length LP, demos, and promo EP's to attract label interest, this Greek quintet has found the formula and the timing to make a huge impact.

Having some familiarity with the band prior to the instant release, yours truly was introduced to songs like "Tribute To Life," "Dissolve Into Grey," "From The Ashes Of Sin," and "Nemesis" from either the 2010 Promo EP, the 2008 "Nemesis" demo, or both. On "Erevos Aenanon," these once decent songs rise to the level of symphonic classics. In fact, few bands can lay claim to having such a cornucopia of memorable and engrossing songs as here ("Black Sky," "All Seems Lost," "Blinded By Faith," "Tribute To Life," "Dissolve Into Grey," "Nemesis" and "From The Ashes Of Sin").

However, it is the fetching riff alongside the piano chord (straight off the first Transformers soundtrack) from "Tribute To Life," and the multi-layered progressive approach of "Dissolve Into Grey" and "From The Ashes Of Sin," that separate from the rest and scream out to champions of high quality symphonic and progressive metal. Fans of the "beauty and beast" vocal approach are not lost on Meden Agan, as heard on the title track and "Nemesis."

Meden Agan's formula is not unlike that of Epica, Kamelot, and even Nightwish. Since the recruitment of über symphonious chanteuse Iliana Tsakiraki, the band is soaring as high as her upper octaves can take it. However, it is those highest octaves that represent my only bone of contention with the band, and it’s a slight one. Tsakiraki's stunning vocals are breathtaking on every level, but her upper and deafening shrill (impressive upon first listen) derogates the greatness of the musicianship the more she uses it. There are times when the shrilling suffocates the music a bit, as on "Universe Unseen" and "From The Ashes Of Sin.” When used in smaller doses like in the opening of "Dissolve Into Grey," it works quite well.

Meden Agan has nixed the sophomore jinx that plagues so many bands. On top of that noteworthy achievement, the band has also braved the sea of symphonic acts to stand apart and carve a name alongside the greats in the upper echelon of the genre.

Highs: Impressive, memorable, symphonic metal classics!

Lows: The ear piercing higher shrill of Iliana is a bit over the top!

Bottom line: Meden Agen navigates the sea of symphonic metal led by the octaves of vocalist Iliana.

Rated 4 out of 5 skulls
4 out of 5 skulls

Rating Description
Rated 5 out of 5 skulls Perfection. (No discernable flaws; one of the reviewer's all-time favorites)
Rated 4.5 out of 5 skulls Near Perfection. (An instant classic with some minor imperfections)
Rated 4 out of 5 skulls Excellent. (An excellent effort worth picking up)
Rated 3.5 out of 5 skulls Good. (A good effort, worth checking out or picking up)
Rated 3 out of 5 skulls Decent. (A decent effort worth checking out if the style fits your tastes)
Rated 2.5 out of 5 skulls Average. (Nothing special; worth checking out if the style fits your taste)
Rated 2 out of 5 skulls Fair. (There is better metal out there)
< 2 skulls Pretty Bad. (Don't bother)