Chronos Zero - A Prelude Into Emptiness - The Tears Path: Chapter Alpha

Chronos Zero A Prelude Into Emptiness - The Tears Path: Chapter Alpha cover
Chronos Zero
APIE - The Tears Path: Chapter Alpha
Bakerteam Records
2013
5
These Italians are debuting with a rather promising little album, that instead of going for the very obvious “euro” power metal that would be expected for a band hailing from the neighboring nation, (our zine is GR based – ye know) are actually going for a way heavier and way more modern prog metal hybrid that seems to try to mix a lot of diverse influences together. They claim to be influenced by everyone from Dream Theater, Symphony X, Adagio, Meshuggah and Nevermore and I’d tend to agree up to a point as they do seem to have studied these bands and tried to copy their styles – succeeding to do so up to a point – in the process creating a bit of a hybrid of their own, a mold and a sound that is characterized by ethnic flavored keyboard passages and has an overall cinematic approach that for the most part seems to work and serve them well. They are almost successful in writing a quite decent concept album although at times there’s a bit of inconsistency I’d be afraid to report because not every song is as interesting as the other and not all are of the same duration with certain composition veering of somewhat longer without any obvious reason.
 
The band’s singer Jan Manenti of Love.Might.Kill fame, puts in a quite strong and multifaceted performance that varies between his normal melodic delivery some more aggressive singing and various vocal styles in between that make the result quite theatrical. (there are even some extreme black metal type of vocals?! Here and there) Claudia Saponi from Absynth Aura, provides some female vocals that contrast rather nicely when they come into play. I’d say the album is not bad, but it basically, suffers on almost, every, track from the band’s own temptation to keep the songs veering on being a certain point... some song clocking at about 8 minutes, are not very interesting and could have been easily shorter than that... they seem to have just kept them going for the sake of being “progressive” I guess? What initially seems to be their “strength” and what would possibly set them apart soon becomes a self-set trap that they too, fall victims to. Complexity for the sake of itself, with the songwriting not being on par with it all.
 
As a first effort, the band can’t be blamed for much more than overt ambition, which in itself is not bad.
It’s not exactly hubris that they have committed, as they are capable musicians, but maybe they have overestimated their abilities?!
 
“Chapter A”, denotes that one or more chapters of a story are to follow. I have to say that not being able to follow this seemingly pseudo-mythological inspired concept (if the cover and titles is to be any indication? As I could not really infer too much from the lyrics) so maybe the band could pick this up and improve over forthcoming installments of this “story”...