BAND/ARTIST: ARJEN ANTHONY'S LUCASSEN'S STAR ONE
ALBUM: VICTIMS OF THE MODERN AGE
LABEL: INSIDE OUT
RELEASE DATE: 01-NOV-10 RATING: 90/100
GENRE: PROGRESSIVE/SYMPHONIC METAL
PRODUCER: ARJEN LUCASSEN
REVIEWER: MICHEL SCHEIJEN
From the intro’s first Mellotron-chords after 9 seconds you’ll already know what you’re going to expect. A heroic theme welcomes the listener. Then a pavement of a vintage sound is setting in, and finally after 41 seconds the heroic theme repeats continually on a classic synthesizer. Abruptly, a roaring Hammond organ baffles the whole set-up. The drums are setting in, and off we go on another journey of Star One!
This time the songs aren’t based on any heroic science-fiction movies. The concept of ‘Victims Of The Modern Age’ is inspired by dystopian and post-apocalyptic sciencefiction movies. A more kind of darker approach.
Dark or heroic? It doesn’t matter at all. Arjen Lucassen made an impressive follow-up to the highly acclaimed ‘Space Metal’-album from 8 years ago. Again he’s in best company of an extraordinary selection of lead-singers, and instrumentalist. The songs are having strong melodies, and are reclining on stable fundament of progressive and heavy-metal arrangements.
Because the stories which the songs are based on are having a more depressing subject, the heavy-metal touch is a bit stronger this time. It’s getting more serious here. Heavy guitar sounds are dominating, and there are a bit less classic synths. Like on the first Star One-album, the vocal performances are suburb. Especially the harmonies between Floor Janssen and Damian Wilson are worth listening.
Fans who bought the special 2cd edition should check-out the track ‘Closer To The Stars’ which features ex-Black Sabbath vocalist Tony Martin. Let’s hope that Arjen Lucassen keeps journeying through the galaxy and stars. Because there’s still a lot of space left out there!
1. Down The Rabbit Hole*
2. Digital Rain*
3. Earth That Was*
4. Victims Of The Modern Age*
5. Human See, Human Do*
6. 24 Hours
7. Cassandra Complex*
8. It’s Alive, She’s Alive, We’re Alive
9. It All Ends Here*
1. As The Crow Dies*
2. Two Plus Two Equals Five*
4. Closer To The Stars*
5. Knife Edge
6. Video: Making Of...
* Michel’s favorite tracks
ARJEN LUCASSEN: GUITARS, HAMMOND, MELLOTRON, ANALOG SYNTHS, SOLINA STRINGS, VOCALS
ED WARBY: DRUMS
PETER VINK: BASS
JOOST VAN DEN BROEK: KEYBOARDS
GARY WEHRKAMP: GUITAR
VOCALS: SIR RUSSEL ALLEN, DAMIAN WILSON, DAN SWANÖ, FLOOR JANSEN
SPECIAL GUEST VOCALS CD2: MIKE ANDERSON, RODNEY BLAZE, TONY MARTIN