• 6.5/10
    ARACHNES - A New Day - 6.5/10


Music for the Masses
Re-release date: May 7, 2021

User Review
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A typical release in the confused 2000s Prog Metal scene

The main bands of the late 90s and early 2000s Prog Metal, Dream Theater, Symphony X, and Opeth have influenced and given birth to many Progressive Metal bands. And yet, of the generation of bands that followed in their footsteps during the 2000s, few have made an actual mark and evolved the genre.

Many would descend into an endless circle of vulgar displays of technical prowess and virtuosity, leaving aside what makes the aforementioned bands great – first and foremost fantastic songwriting – next to the genre hallmarks of odd time signatures, lengthy tracks, and technical excellence.

Others would get stuck in a deep identity crisis, trying to incorporate Progressive elements into their music, but struggling to break away from the Power Metal sound of the decade. Italy has produced a fair share of these, including household names such as Vision Divine and Labyrinth.

A small step for Prog, a big step for Arachnes

Arachnes was formed in 1995 in Italy, and while initially their sound had more of a neoclassical essence to it, similarly to bands like Narnia and Rata Blanca, over the course of their discography, they have leaned increasingly towards the progressive end of things. A New Day is a departure from Arachnes’ early neoclassical roots, showcasing the group at full musical maturity as a Progressive ensemble. First released only digitally in 2011, the record is the 6th and last entry in the band’s catalog. To celebrate the record’s 10th anniversary, their new label, Music for the Masses, is finally releasing the album in physical form in 2021.

The musicianship on display is great. Clearly, guitarist Frank Caruzo has drunk plenty from the YJ Malmsteen fountain and has the chops to back it up, and the keyboard solos, drums and bass provide a nice backdrop to showcase his riffs and solos. His brother, Eric Caruzo is in charge of vocals, and while he certainly gets the job done, Eric’s vocal chops are not on par with Frank’s guitar prowess. His vocals are reminiscent of some of the lesser voices that Malmsteen has employed throughout the years.

Album Breakdown

“Big Hearth” is probably the best demonstration of what Arachnes can do when everything works. Proggy odd tempo riffs mingling guitar and keyboard lines are followed with large vocal harmonies in the chorus, and the whole song dabbles back and forth from Power to Prog with ease.

“Magic World” is probably the best track in A New Day, featuring a memorable melody, headbanging chugging riffs,  nice guitar harmonies, and the perfect marriage between vocals and a Proggy instrumental bed. The keyboard solo is one of the highlights of the record, as is Frank’s usual flashy guitar work.

The heaviest track in A New Day, “The Reason of Things” is probably the composition that dwells closest to V-era Symphony X and Awake-era Dream Theater in the record. It works very well, and the band even manages to incorporate their trademark neoclassical touch to some moments while managing to keep the overall Proggy vibe.

There are 2 corny and over the top ballads in the record: “My Face is Hard” – which could’ve just as easily been in a Laura Pausini record and the bonus track for the 2021 re-release, “First of All” – a piano ballad that is too soft for Eric’s powerful vocals, and not in a nice Eric Adams way. “Into the Fog” is a more successful attempt at a mellow song, marrying an intimate piano-based intro with Prog heavy chugging and a melodic neoclassical chorus.

Instrumental track “Your Death” sounds like a boss fight theme from a good role-playing game and shows the potential the band could have if they had dared venture further away from their neoclassical standards in the vocal lines.

A cover of Deep Purple’s “Fireball” is one of the closing tracks in A New Day. While not a bad cover by any means, it is a bit too faithful to the original. It would’ve been nice to see a bit more of the band’s signature sound, guitar, and keyboard work seeping into their version of it. Even Eric’s singing is more of a tribute to Sir Ian Gillan’s vocals than in his own style. One can’t help but feel the track is out of place in this record.


While presenting a clear evolution for Arachnes, in the grand scheme of Prog, A New Day is a deep cut for the Progressive Metal fan that is looking for more of what Labyrinth, Vision Divine, Ayreon, and other Power/Prog acts have to offer. Fans of Yngwie willing to dive off the deep end of Prog will also find something here to love, although they might appreciate the band’s earlier work a little more.



Frank Caruso – guitars
Erik Caruso – vocals, keyboards
Stefano Caironi – drums
Gabry Baroni – bass

A New Day – Tracklist

  1. Psychedelic Trip (Intro) – 0.04
  2. I Know the Darkness – 4.59
  3. Big Hearth – 3.54
  4. I’m Sorry – 4.17
  5. Into the Fog – 4.59
  6. Magic World – 3.26
  7. My Face Is Hard – 3.45
  8. Running in an Old Town – 4.22
  9. Take Your Life – 4.45
  10. Parallel Worlds (orchestral version) – 2.12
  11. The Reason of the Things – 3.33
  12. Your Death – 4.49
  13. Fireball (Deep Purple cover) – 3.34
  14. First Of All (bonus track) – 3.53


  • Alex Reis

    Alex is a reviewer here at Metal Express Radio, born and raised in Curitiba, PR, Brazil, yet living in Antwerp, Belgium, since 2010. AC/DC was his first intro to Rock and Metal, but Metallica and Iron Maiden were the turning point for his love of the genre. Alex has played the guitar since he was 14, and has been an aspiring musician ever since.  Also serving as lead guitarist and vocalist for Belgian/Brazilian Hard Rock outfit SSC, Alex and co. have released a single a few years ago, but are yet to follow with a full-length  release that's been 20 years in the works. When Alex is not writing for MER or making music, he works at the Belgian tech scene, having served as CTO and other technical roles in numerous startups and organizations.

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