I wrote a review for SACRUM's previous release – "Cognition" – a few years ago in which I compared them to a very prominent American Progressive Metal band. I am very pleased to say that there will be no further comparison to said prominent American Progressive Metal band. Nor to any other band. I also mentioned the vocals at times wavering a bit – once again I’m pleased to announce that the vocal performance, along with everything else on this album, is top notch.
And I mean, top notch. "Days of Quarantine" was released in 2009 and a quick glance at that year in Progressive Metal makes it hard to find any other releases that could compete with this for album of the year. You know who released an album that year too, didn’t they?
Moving on; you don’t need to re-invent the wheel to create a performance car, just make a car thats really, really good. In terms of style SACRUM hasn’t changed much since their last release – this is still a solid base of American Progressive Metal in the engine room, with the more melodic Power-Progressive styling of the Europeans adding flair and curves to the finished product. It is very keyboard heavy, perhaps more so than their previous album, and samples are abundant. This is still no synth-fest though and the strings and percussion continue to dominate the music. As is standard in this genre, you’ll find some quieter moments spread across the album and the occasional ballad type song does really well to slow things down a bit. Emotion plays a big part in the overall feel and concept of this album and this is where the vocals deliver in spades. (I’ll leave it up to you to figure out the concepts of the album.) Don’t fear a sop-fest though, as with "Cognition" you do get a few really heavy moments, in the riffs but also in the vocals and the album is generally very well balanced that way.
SACRUM has matured a lot in the year since their previous release, and as mentioned before this is one of the best Progressive Metal albums you could’ve heard in 2009. I could find no real weak spots on this album, and the “skip” button will surely not be needed. I’m not sure if you’ll find this in many record stores, but if you’re a fan of the genre you should do yourself a favour and make a freekin’ plan, ‘cause this is freekin’ awesome.
(Online July 10, 2012)