Review by Adam M on March 5, 2015.
Arcane merge so many different sounds from the heavy and dynamic to the subtle and powerful to craft a progressive album that is very distinct, though one can certainly hear some strains of the band Tool’s sound, for example. Every song has a wonderful array of instrumentation and many are absolute centerpieces for the progressive metal genre in general. How does the shift towards more gentle sounds on the second album function? Well, the approach certainly is unique, but unlike the musicianship, I’m not sure if it’s executed quite as elegantly. While the song-writing and performances always approach perfection, the balance of the album is perhaps a little less close to that moniker.
The use of guitars including the phenomenal acoustic ones used on this double album is absolutely phenomenal, though, whether the band occupies heavier or softer musical avenues. The album Tellurian by Soen also approaches the sound of the band Tool or even the band Dredg, but that quality album doesn’t even come close to the job that Arcane does at crafting their own distinct sound with a similar familiarity to Tool. Both the vocalist and bassist recall that band, but the other instrumentation that adds a different character to Arcane is even more dynamic and interesting than what Soen presents. Every track on this double album is also more successful at creating an involving atmosphere and is always complemented nicely by the dynamic vocals. The tone of the album is positive, uplifting and effective at all times. There are many moments that stick out on this double album, from the opening track Promise (Part 2) to the song Learned and on to many of the moments of the more subtle second album.
Arcane has set a standard for current progressive music that will be difficult to top and adds to Australia’s growing heavy metal prowess. As the launch date of the new Tool album approaches, one thing enters my mind. How will they top this brilliant new double album Known/Learned by Arcane?
Rating: 9 out of 10