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Shadow Gallery - Legacy (9/10) - USA - 2001

Genre: Progressive Metal
Label: Magna Carta Records
Playing time: 71:53
Band homepage: Shadow Gallery


  1. Cliffhanger 2
  2. Destination Unknown
  3. Colors
  4. Society Of The Mind
  5. Legacy
  6. First Light
Shadow Gallery - Legacy
Six songs and almost 72 minutes playing time? Must be Fun-Punk...

But seriously, "Legacy" by now is the fourth album of the Americans and after the phenomenal three albums the fans have been anxious for the new one. So, right away into the player and - something doesn't fit! Something is different from the albums so far...

Let's take a look. The most important trademarks of the SHADOW GALLERY-sound are (almost all) still there, the layered vocals, piano and flute as regular instruments, but still there are some apparent changes. For one the heaviness has partly been greatly reduced to "Tyranny" and secondly you'll find more and longer instrumental parts, which sometimes interrupt the flow of the songs that had marked the compositions so far and so take away another key-element to the sound. Had the first three albums all been excelling in the amazing accessibility of the songs, within highest musical demand, they are not as catchy anymore, yet still being far from complicated.

With "Cliffhanger 2" we have the sequel to the song off their second album "Carved In Stone", in which the theme of the original is taken up again, while "Destination Unknown" begins very calm and emotional, borne by Mike Baker's exceptional voice and the as usual multi-layered vocals, and "Colors" features pure calmness and emotion, with acosutic guitar, piano and everything you would expect from a song like that.

"Society Of The Mind" combines complexity with catchiness, alternating between Progressive Rock and Progressive Metal, while "Legacy" pulls another trigger, more and heavier guitars, ennobled by piano, great! Well, and then we still have "First Light", a song of truly epic proportions with more than 34 minutes, but within that there also are four minutes of silence and a "hidden track". This hidden track again is "Carved In Stone" revisited, as the instrumental that already had been hidden there, is taken up again.

The quality-level of the album still is very high and shadows the gros of the Progressive Metal-scene easily, but the problem is that SHADOW GALLERY have set the standards so incredibly high with their first three albums that they cannot reach this extremely high level with "Legacy". Still SHADOW GALLERY are among the absolute creme de la creme of Prog Metal and "Legacy" won't disappoint any genre-fan for sure!

Chris Doran

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