The Hungarian band Everwood previously released Mind Games (2005) and The Raven's Nest (2007), but unfortunately I'm not familiar with these albums. When I listened to Without Saving, the third release of Everwood, I found it unbelievable that this album was recorded and sung by a non-English speaking band. The pronunciation of the English lyrics by lead singer Matyas Haraszti is really amazing. I didn't hear any accent at all and moreover, he has a very strong voice that made me mostly think of Ted Leonard, the fantastic singer of Enchant. Also music wise Everwood sounds rather similar to Enchant. However, while listening to the album more references popped up.
From the first track it's clear that the music of these Hungarians can be described best as prog metal and thus you hear strong hints of bands as Dream Theater and Symphony X. Keyboardist Attila Tanczer is mainly responsible for this comparison; he plays very strong and he did some additional sampling as well. Guitarist and backing vocalist Ferenc Farkas is the second key member in Everwood's music. His heavy riffs are the basis for many tracks and in general his solos are very enjoyable. Unlike drummer Tamas Szabo, the role of bassist and background singer Sandor Kallai isn't that big in the whole musical picture. The way Szabo plays the drums on the up-tempo pieces made me think of Mike Portnoy (Transatlantic, ex-Dream Theater) and Simon Phillips (Toto, ex-The Who). He's the driving force and the engine of the band. His powerful drumming adds a lot to this type of music.
Everwood recorded a very stable third album. All songs on Without Saving sound very professional and mature. Take for example the strong instrumental track Pieces. It shows that they can easily compete with every other band in the genre. The new album isn't a real concept album, but in a way the twelve songs are strongly related. They're all part of an inevitable journey through the voids and depths of the human soul. Without Saving is highly recommended to people who enjoy the music of bands as Enchant, Dream Theater or Symphony X.
***+ Henri Strik (edited by Peter Willemsen)
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