Vera : The album ‘Lykaia’ of the Swedish band Soen – with coryphées like ex-Opeth drummer Martin Lopez and guitarist Markus Jidell (a.o; Avatarium) in their ranks – was originally released in February 2017 and ended up at number 1 of my album list of the year. And I was not the only one with that preference, since this refined masterpiece could be found in many year lists. Lords of Metal’s extensive and jubilating review of this album can be read right here.
Soen toured intensively for this record and – perfectionists as they are – they thought that some improvements could be done to the original recordings. Thus ‘Lykaia’ got a re-mastering by Gentry Studer at Epic Mastering studio. It is up to sound purists among the readers to discover the differences. The artwork was revisited as well and crafted by Paul Tippett in iconic logo style. It remains a top notch album that still stands like a rock in the sea. When elements of Opeth, Tool, Pink Floyd and superior instrumental brilliance align, then art like you hear on ‘Lykaia’ is born. With amazing singer too of course. During the manifold live executions of the songs, they still grew and developed, that’s why it is also interesting that they added some bonus tracks in a live situation, more precisely ‘Sectarian’ (live in Lisbon) and ‘Lucidity’ (live in Rome). For the digital collector there is also ‘Jinn’ (live in Lisbon). We also get two bonus tracks in studio versions, namely ‘Vitriol’ and ‘God’s Acre’. Since they offer fifteen minutes extra music, this is really worthwhile. Those who only realize now, what they have been missing, just run to the shop (or the digital market) to purchase this immediately!