New York City is the residence of Infinite Spectrum, a progressive metal band that released their second outing under the name; Haunter Of The Dark. Just like the band's debut Misguided, this album is a conceptual album, this time based on a H.P. Lovecraft short story with the same name. Infinite Spectrum was conceived in 2007 by bass player Alex Repetti and guitarist Alex Raykin, the band got its face when singer/songwriter Will Severin joined and Infinite Spectrum saw its completion when drummer Eddie Redovane closed the ranks. After the release of their debut album drummer Eddie saw himself replaced by Greg Schwab and during the preparations of Haunter Of The Dark keyboard player Katie Pachnos was added to the line-up.
One of the items that regularly returns when you start listening to a concept album is a short part, usually spoken words, that explains parts of the story and leads the album in. Haunter Of The Dark has a spoken intro; Prologue: Providence, Winter, 1934 as well as a spoken outro Epilogue: Providence, Summer, 1935. Leaving 8 songs to tell the musical story. Eight songs that are coherent and very interesting to listen to, Will Severin has an intriguing but interesting voice and really tells the story. Musically Infinite Spectrum takes some minor influences from Dream Theater, bombastic parts of Kansas and Spock's Beard (Neal Morse era), hints of Kamelot and due to the concept, there are also some elements of the Dutch master Ayreon blended in the music. When it comes to the presented music, I guess some of the compositions are brilliant, like the powerful The Calling, the title track: Haunter Of The Dark and the fine 2:12. The ballad: The Stranger Things I've Learned almost has a neo progressive rock feel and the use of a second set of vocals makes sure this song is perhaps the most impressive of the album. Others are solid progressive rock compositions, All That We See has a cool melodic touch and a fine present bass line, where the guitar gets to excel over. Fear might give you the impression to be a bit of an average power metal style song, but the song is performed in a stunning way, so this is not an average power metal composition. The only thing I could think of, is the album's epical composition The Church. This eighteen minute song, divided in five parts, is a bit too long to keep me focussed all the time.
Although all the ingredients are present to create an amazing five star album; great musicians, a vocalist with a distinguished style and solid compositions, I think Infinite Spectrum is still one step away from a place in the highest ranks of progressive metal. Perhaps the successor of Haunter Of The Dark will be the one that ensures that spot. Haunter Of The Dark is a solid album, one step away from the top. I am sure they will get there.
****+ Pedro Bekkers (edited by Astrid de Ronde)
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