Saturday, October 3, 2015

Electric Red - Celestial Wizardry ~ Magical Astronomy (2015)

Touhou metal is far enough off the beaten path, but should you desire to venture outside of metal norms, Electric Red has you covered with its Celestial Wizardry ~ Magical Astronomy EP, a 25-minute epic built around eight arrangements. At first, the music can seem overwhelming, but there's no denying that it has an otherworldliness to it as it cycles between power/progressive metal and softer passages. The trick up the one-man project's sleeve is that, as songwriting breathes and flows freely, repetition is kept to a minimum. A winding adventure is a better way to put it.

More or less, the sheer volume of ideas is Electric Red's strength, as is, generally, how the music is arranged. It's nearly impossible to tell where the song would divide into eight arrangements, so the track plays seamlessly from start to finish. Just as Electric Red intended, the EP is a sprawling, complex arrangement in its entirety--and, at the very least, takes five listens to sink in. There's always a new piece to discover under the layers upon layers of sound, and only near the middle does the chunky progressiveness manifest itself when the guitars split into multi-note riffs and drums provide muscular backing. A real treat, too, is listening to the synths take over the leading melody from the rest of the music--they complete the progressive package with their liquid-like tone and add a dash of genre familiarity to the track.

Celestial Wizardry ~ Magical Astronomy doesn't have any weaknesses unless you have an aversion to lengthy music that constantly rises and falls. There's a whole lot to like here, particularly if you're a fan of aggressive guitar riffs, melody, and progressiveness thrown into one package. If the one-man project keeps this up, monumental things are clearly en route--if he can rework and arrange preexisting music with this level of expertise, the thought of completely original music is an exciting proposition.

-TMA

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