Released by: Independent
Release Date: March 17th, 2014
Genre: Melodic Metal
Jacinthe Poulin (vocals)
François Vachon (guitar)
Raynald Brochu (guitar)
Louis Doyon (bass)
Nicolas Bilodeau (drums)
3.Red Letter Days
5.Circles of Despair
6.Deadly Prophets of the Printed Page
7.Brothers From the Seed of Cain
If you go on Merkabah’s website (Merkabah.ca) you will find the following words describing the bands latest release: an epic journey through the most fantastic worlds filled with the most intense emotions and rich sound textures. Those are some lofty words for a band to live up to. More importantly that leads to some lofty expectations from the listener. And as a band you better be able to back those words up with something quite impressive.
Well, the quintet (Jacinthe Poulin – vocals, Francois Vachon and Raynald Brochu – guitars, Louis Doyon – bass, and Nicolas Bilodeau – drums/percussion) who hail from Quebec have indeed released something impressive enough to match the aforementioned words. Forming back in 2002 it wasn’t until 2005 that they released their debut cd entitled Shadows Never Forget. Then two years later saw the follow up, The Realm Of All Secrets. Shadows… was a great starting point. And with The Realm… the band continued to grow, expanding on what they delivered with their debut. 2014 finally sees the band release their third CD, Ubiquity (for the North American fans March 17 will be the exact date, the rest of the world has to wait until April 4).
Ubiquity is definitely an epic journey. The main road of this expedition is filled with some great heavy metal music. But, each song individually, and the album as a whole, are intersected by melodic passages, progressive movements, acoustic interludes, and symphonic tendencies. None of which overpower any other, but all are beautifully woven together in a sounds cape that draws the listener into Merkabah’s world.
Mythomania is the first song. The first minute or so, with its piano, guitar, and keyboards kind of acts as an “intro” to the cd before kicking into high gear with some heavy guitars and drumming. Next up is Divine Sparks, which builds on the pace of the opener with some power metal influences. Red Letter Days slows the tempo a bit and has a bit of a symphonic feel to it. As much as I enjoy Jacinthe’s voice throughout the entire CD I really like it on this song as she seems to sing with a bit of an attitude. Circles Of Despair is more of a melodic, mid tempo song with a cool guitar solo that brings the song to an end. Brothers From The Seed Of Cain reminds me a little of 70s prog rock. With its acoustic parts it almost has a folk vibe to it. Deadly Prophets Of The Printed Page picks the pace up a little, has a couple of cool guitar solos and has a cool symphonic part after the first solo. Agartha is the next to final song. The first half of this song has the same vibe that Brothers… has being mostly acoustic. The second half picks up the intensity before going back to the acoustic sound to bring the song to an end. The cd closes with the title track, a 12 minute instrumental epic. As an instrumental I feel that I am being told a story with just the music alone. And the song sums up what the entire cd is about, using the melodic, progressive, acoustic and symphonic elements.
Ubiquity is a great cd. The songs are well crafted and interesting. The music is beautiful, passionate and intense. The same can be said about Jacinthe’s voice as well.
Written by Jeff