Leon : Melted Space, now where do I know that name from? After some Googling I remembered, I saw them in 2016 when they were the support act of Symphony X, together with Myrath. I remember quite well that I was very impressed with Symphony X, less impressed with Myrath and completely underwhelmed by Melded Space. Well, this review is of course completely about their newest album ‘Darkening Light’ and not about old performances. Under leadership of Piere Le Pape the group was formed in 2007 and has released two albums thus far, The Great Lie’ (2015) and ‘From The Past’ (2012). For ‘Darkening Light’ a legion of guests were asked to participate for a guest performance, amongst them none less than the legendary Jeff Scott Soto (Sons Of Apollo)!
Before listening to the new album I did some research and checked out their previous work, which didn’t do anything for me. The biggest problem with those albums were the unconvincing vocals and the cliché sympho-power-prog metal. It surprised me a lot when I played ‘Darkening Light’ and actually thought it was pretty good! Especially the vocals took huge leaps forward, they’re more convincing, have better pitching and the melodies are much more interesting! The best work is done by Soto, he’s such a terrific vocalist. The production sounds a bit better too, there seems to be more dynamic in the music, which makes the music sound nicer. The songs are still pretty standard, symphonic metal with a hint of prog, but honestly, sometimes it’s better to make predictable music that’s good than making inventive music that’s not. If I must name some criticism I would mention the lyrics, besides the fact that the English isn’t flawless, the lyrics don’t always match the vocal lines and result into somewhat strange vocal lines. Luckily it doesn’t happen that often, so it’s definitely not a huge problem, but still a minor irritation.
With ‘Darkening Light’ Le Pape shows that he’s got a lot more to offer than he’s shown so far. For me it’s the first Melted Space album that I found worth listening to. I expect that the fans of the bands will love the album as well. A recommended album for the fans of symphonic metal with a very orchestral sound!