North
by Prog-Nose



Six years passed, since the previous albums, “Bridge” and “Flesh”, were released during the same year and now they finally recorded a successor and I can assure you, it was worth waiting for.
Although I like their previous albums, this one has been in my CD player more often than the rest of their back catalogue, because Everon sounds great on this newest release. They found a perfect balance between progressive rock, metal, melodic choruses and sublime solos.
Due to the high ‘Michael Sadler’ sound of Oliver's voice, I have often compared them with Saga, but now they found an even more pronounced own sound, which displaces the name Saga into the background.
"Hands" is a perfect opener. It is the hardest song of the album, which is fairly calm for the rest. One of the many beautiful (eyes closed and enjoy) guitar solos opens "Brief Encounter", continuing with acoustic piano, followed by a beautiful, melodic chorus. This is one of the strengths of the album, every chorus has a high sing-along content, without becoming too poppy. "From Where I Stand" has the same acoustic start, this time with Rupert Gillet on cello, which turns into an impressive orchestral chorus.
Rupert is back with his cello for "The Test of Time", a number, built around some complex rhythms and which contains a beautiful instrumental piece.
The best track, in my opinion, coincidentally also one of the longest, is "Wasn’t it good", the most "Everon" number of this CD. Again, growing slowly to a climax with guitars, choirs and an orchestra. Mandatory food for prog and metalfans.
Also Judith Stüber, who sang on the previous album "Flesh" and who also provides vocals for Satyrian is back. This time she gets a full song, the beautiful ballad "Islanders".
There are quite a lot of semi-ballads on the album, but because of the variations in rhythms, sounds and melodies, it doesn’t really bother me. A wonderful album with only highlights.

Rating: 9/10