LEVIATHAN – Mischief Of Malcontent

album cover
  • 7.5/10
    LEVIATHAN - Mischief Of Malcontent - 7.5/10


Label: Self-Released
Release date: August 12, 2022

User Review
0/10 (0 votes)

Hydra or Leviathan?

The American Prog Metal band from Colorado, not to be mistaken for… well the other dozen or so bands wearing the same name, is releasing their tenth studio album, aptly named Mischief of Malcontent. This Leviathan is far from being a band of beginners, and since the 90s they have had time to polish their Prog Metal.

Leviathan delivers a Heavy Prog with clear vocals sometimes tweaked with some effects and still some aggressivity without ever falling into extreme singing. Aggressivity and edginess rather come from the guitars and convoluted rhythmics. Sometimes the vocals are androgynous a bit like James Labrie but not as versatile as Damian Wilson, for the sake of a comparison with the top players of the genre.

Mischief managed?

Mischief Of Malcontent is composed of only five songs, that all explore the bleakness of today’s society in a different way. That way, this album avoids the traditional pitfalls of Prog Metal and does not lose its purpose to unnecessary lengths.

“Unfriendly to Human” is by progressive standard a rather catchy piece, with clear and sufficient production, although not remarkable and perhaps lacking some punch. On the other hand “Dark Side Down” will take you on a somewhat smoother ride. It is both more melodic and expressive. It is with the third song that Leviathan reaches its best on this album. “Rorshach Test” is a very nice piece of Prog Metal with wry humor and dismal irony. The voice here can become quite aggressive. Riffs seem to spiral, twist and coil into disturbing thoughts. The incursions of acoustic guitars, piano, and cello are great additions. The sound is almost jazzy and can make you think about bands like Thank You The Scientist for instance. You will also find similar orchestrations in “Semblance of Self” where they are adding flavor to the multiple layers of guitars.

With the last song, Leviathan gives you a history lesson (or “history lessens” to reuse one of these most excellent Skyclad puns). “The World Is Watching” is the pièce de résistance: a thirteen minutes long tune, with this Avantgarde aesthetic of circus of madness. It is theatrical with a dark twist, more daring and dashing with mixed influences, also a very good moment on this album.

Final words

While Leviathan may not be the most original of Prog Metal bands, this new release displays many qualities gained from their experience and should find its place on your shelves. With at least two very interesting songs, it sums up the genre in a nutshell. While enjoyable, “Mischief Of Malcontent” is perhaps a little too sensible and not mischievous enough.


Unfriendly to Humans
Dark Side Down
Rorschach Test
Semblance of Self
The World is Watching


Raphael Gazal: Vocals
Kyle Brian Abbott: Drums
John Sellers: Guitar and Cello
John Lutzow: Guitar, Keys, Vocals and Bass


  • Séverine Peraldino

    Reviewer, interviewer and apprentice photographer for Metal Express Radio, Séverine comes from a small place in the Southern French Alps, near Grenoble. Her taste for classic Heavy Metal is a family heritage and after growing up listening to Iron Maiden, Dio, Metallica and Angra she expanded her horizons with almost every subgenre of Metal, from Power, to Prog, a little bit of Death and Black Metal. She mostly enjoys albums telling stories with originality. When she is not travelling around for concerts and festivals, you can find her reading a good book, or playing board games with friends.

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