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Myrath - Legacy

If you've never heard "Oriental metal", you should check out Myrath's latest.It can never be overstated that one of metal's strongest qualities is its diversity. And Franco-Tunisian progressive power metal band Myrath's new album Legacy is testament to that fact. It would be reasonable to fear that the addition of a Middle Eastern sound would come off as a novelty that ultimately derails what would otherwise be pretty good genre fare. But in fact it breathes new life into it, something the band itself calls "oriental metal", taking us back to my original assertion that metal is like a culinary base for almost any spice to be added to for unique and amazing new flavors to be discovered and enjoyed. The first single, Believer, gives a great taste of the overall album, with some energetic singing from Zaher Zorgati and solid solo work from guitarist Malek Ben Arbia.

From there the album continues on a steady path of heavy, rhythmically sophisticated jams that are catchy enough to be worthy of airplay. What I appreciate is that while the lighter moments are great, the heavier tunes such as The Needle (which features some nice Symphony X-style riffing) are every bit as powerful, if not more so by contrast, proving that the band stands firmly by the balls and chunk mantra of all good progmetal. At the risk of sounding reductionist, I would describe it all as Norway's Ark with Enchant's Ted Leonard singing, all filtered through a Middle Eastern melodic sensibility. However you want to think of it, this is some really good progmetal music that deserves a listen.

The Bottom Line: This is some great progmetal with a different twist on the genre from Tunisia of all places. Myrath manages to give the genre a shot in the arm while avoiding the trap of collapsing under the weight of novelty. Nice work!

- Genghis really digs this band - but doesn't "the Orient" traditionally refer to Asia?

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