Anubis Gate - Andromeda Unchained
Locomotive Music
Progressive Power Metal
14 songs (1:05:52)
Release year: 2007
Anubis Gate, Locomotive Music
Reviewed by Goat
Archive review

After bending my ears around these Danish Proggers’ excellent The Detached last year, I thought it was high time to travel back in their discography and see what I had missed. And I’m pleased to say that I missed a lot, because their third full-length, 2007’s Andromeda Unchained, is as good as or even better than The Detached. There’s a similar style, but it’s heavier than before, with plenty of crunchy riffing, and the Prog aspects are taken care of with plenty of skilled musicianship and Dream Theater-esque keyboard solos – overall, however, this is less experimental and varied in style than The Detached. Don’t for one second think that the songwriting is any worse, however, since the same high standards are adhered to and Andromeda Unchained is packed full of enjoyable excellence, making great usage of the hour-plus running time. A concept album about some sci-fi space battle for freedom, the story never gets in the way of the music, and the band prove again and again that they exactly what they’re doing.

You can hear this from the first moments of the album. Intro Freak Storm At Post Zeta... One Child Missing... may have a wordy title but the atmospheric value is immense, drawing you into the album’s dark framework immediately with radio chatter, electronic bleeps and arctic keyboards bringing the ominous urgency of said missing child to life. Some percussive clanging, and first track proper Snowbound is born, an epic build-up to the launch of Jacob Hansen’s brilliant vocals, as ever sounding something like Queensrÿche’s Geoff Tate but even more heartfelt, uplifting and powerful. The band’s ability to throw disparate elements like electronics into the mix is typically brilliant, complex keyboards clashing with the melodically raging guitars for dominance, and it’s absolutely wonderful to listen to, flowing perfectly and never leaving the listener adrift in the band’s world. The following Waking Hour is perhaps even better with added speed and vitality, and if you’re not hooked by the time the title track’s orchestral-touched melancholic grandeur rolls around, your ears aren’t working.

There is far, far too much of excellence here to mention it all, but it’s worth mentioning a couple of tracks especially. The near Tech-Thrash opening to the brilliant Resurrection Time is a personal favourite, and I fell in love with the whole track for a few days when I first heard the outstanding chorus, a real highlight. Another supreme moment is the eight-minute This White Storm Through My Mind, Hanson’s vocals even better and the incorporation of spooky samples behind the riffage up the atmospheric punch even more, before some spectacular guitar playing brings it back down to earth. Even inevitable ballad Take Me Home is wonderful, there are really no filler tracks at all, and what’s more, the album is relistenable as hell – it was very hard to get bored with The Detached, but Andromeda Unchained is even better in that regard. So, ultimately, what more needs saying? Go and buy this album, it’s great.

Killing Songs :
Snowbound, Waking Hour, Andromeda Unchained, Beyond Redemption, Resurrection Time, This White Storm Through My Mind, The End Of Millennium Road
Goat quoted 88 / 100
Other albums by Anubis Gate that we have reviewed:
Anubis Gate - Horizons reviewed by Joel and quoted 92 / 100
Anubis Gate - Sheep reviewed by Alex and quoted no quote
Anubis Gate - Anubis Gate reviewed by Alex and quoted 78 / 100
Anubis Gate - The Detached reviewed by Goat and quoted 90 / 100
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