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On disc: Animations

Reset Your Soul - Claudia Ehrhardt - 8 stars

Reset Your Soul

Reset Your Soul
(Sonic Maze - 2010)

The Polish outfit Animations presented their self-titled debut in 2007, an instrumental album. In 2009 they released on their own Reset Your Soul which is now released through their own label Sonic Maze Euro-wide. The new album Reset Your Soul features the new line-up, the band added singer Darek Bartosiewicz to their ranks.
The title track is also the opener, Reset Your Soul is a 7 minute long track and so they head into the album with a long instrumental passage - something their fans should like. But then Darek Bartosiewicz joins in and his smooth melodic vocals build a counterpart to the instrumental frenzy. They switch between complex parts and slow melodic passages where the vocals dominate and the instruments step back a bit. At Demons Of War keyboardist Tomek Konopka adds some reminiscences to 70's prog rock, a dash of ELP, but also some neo-classical-inspired elements. Singer Darek reminds me a bit of Arno Menses (Sieges Even) while musically there are parallels to Dream Theater. Then they surprise the listener with a jazzy intermezzo before they head back into the progressive metal fields. At the 10 minute long The Manhattan Project they take you onto a sonic journey with slow piano passages, riff-based parts and complex up-tempo parts. The instrumental give the guys the chance to show their craftsmanship and make a connection to their instrumental debut album. With Request For Redemption Animations offer a short track with just 2:41 minutes while all the other tracks are at least 7 minutes long. So it's almost like an intermezzo what you get with this beautiful piano ballad. The longest track is The Last Man which is just over 13 minutes. The relaxed vocals of Darek are asking for your attention and drag you into their sound universe. Fans of instrumental music will appreciate 1989, a track just shy of 8 minutes. And again the guys show their talent, but without ego trips, they still focus on the song and so even prog fans who aren't into instrumental music - like me - can enjoy this one. The closer is Toxicyber which shows some new sound elements. Even if the song has some complex, almost bulky passages, it's catchy. Mainly it's Darek's vocal line which is memorable, but works well with the music.
The artwork reflects the music as it's complex and somehow simple at a time. Looks like they are on their way to create their own sound with Darek on vocals. I'll definitely keep an eye on the Polish!

8 stars

Claudia Ehrhardt


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