SECRET SPHERE – The Nature Of Time

SECRET SPHERE - The Nature Of Time
  • 7/10
    SECRET SPHERE - The Nature Of Time - 7/10


Frontiers Records
Release date: June 2, 2017

User Review
0/10 (0 votes)

The new album The Nature Of Time from Italy’s Secret Sphere avoids the two major pitfalls of Symphonic Progressive Metal: excessive noodling and repetitive songs structures. There’s virtuosity abound in the instrumentation here, and a wealth of great solos from all players, but there’s none of the excessive preening that can sometimes take the listener out of the experience of listening to a song.

The closest to an opus the album has is the nine-minute “The Awakening”, and there’s a lot of flash musicianship to be found, but its done in a way that only highlights the variety within The Nature Of Time. After the quiet introductory piano tune “Intermission” comes “The Calling”, which starts slow and quiet but builds into a hard, powerful cut driven by a solid guitar lead and the clear, strong vocals of Michele Luppi. He’s a great singer, but if there’s one quibble to be found with the album is that the production brings his vocals way up in the mix while burying the guitars (thus falling into the third major pitfall of Symphonic Metal—vocals that are too loud and/or keyboards with guitars and percussion pushed back). It is minor, though, because on the slower songs like “Love” the vocal carries the day and on the harder edged tunes like “Courage” and “Reliance” there’s enough sonic punch to overlook the mix.

One senses that the songs could hit a little harder than they do, but they still hit. A real treat not to be overlooked is the Progressive instrumental workout “Commitment” near the end of the album; the band flies through styles and technical runs in a manner that is somehow both groovy and unpredictable.



  • Daniel Waters

    Daniel was a reviewer here at Metal Express Radio. Iron Maiden’s Piece Of Mind wasn’t the first Metal album he owned, but it was the one that lifted the lid off his soul when he received the record as a gift on his 15th birthday. He's been a Metal fan ever since. He's probably best known as the author of various Young Adult novels such as the Generation Dead series and the ghost story Break My Heart 1,000 Times, now also a major motion picture entitled I Still See You, starring Bella Thorne. Writing and music, especially Heavy Metal music, has always been inextricably linked in his mind and career. His first paid gig doing any type of writing was for Cemetery Dance, where he wrote a horror-themed music column called Dead Beats, and when he was writing the first Generation Dead novel he had a ritual where he started his writing day with a Metal playlist that kicked off with “Crushing Belial” by Shadows Fall.

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