Ship of Theseus – The Paradox

Rating: 3/5
Distributor/label URL: Punishment18 Records
Released: 2019
Buy Album: http://www.punishment18records.com/releases/?a=6645
Band Website: www.facebook.com/ShipOfTheseusOfficial/

Band line-up:

Michele Guaitoli – Vocals
Marco Cardona – Guitar
Alessandro Galliera – Guitar
Giorgio Terenziani – Bass
Paolo Crimi – Drums

Tracklisting:

1.) The Paradox
2.) Reborn
3.) Time Has Come
4.) Hear Me Out
5.) Blue
6.) Suspended
7.) Like a Butterfly
8.) The Promise
9.) Reflections in the Mirror
10.) The Cage
11.) Wounded
12.) Ending
13.) Time Has Come (ft. Greg Bissonette)

Review:

So, a funny thing hit me while listening to The Paradox, Ship of Theseus’ new album. Do you ever have that feeling when you know you can hear something similar to another band, but you can’t quite place where you’ve heard it before? Then it hit me: I was kind of hearing some Korn in here, or perhaps more generally nu/alt. metal.

It’s not an overwhelming influence, and it’s mostly in certain aesthetic aspects more than in any core approach to music or song-writing. But there is some of it there: the occasional stop-start, chugga-chugga riffing, the downtuned, dirty guitar sound, the tortured vocals dipping from time to time into whispered snarls. “Time Has Come” is a particularly stark example of this.

Yet at the same time, and perhaps more importantly to the overall musical construction, there’s a lot of modern progressive metal influence here. The song structures are varied and change as they go, and when they’re not going for a Jonathan Davis-esque angry rasp they reach more for that typically progressive metal half-way between classic and power metal. All told, if you ever wondered what a jamming session between Deftones and Nevermore might sound like, Ship of Theseus have got you covered.

Ship of Theseus does suffer from a bit of a lack of identity beyond this interesting mix, however. For some prog metal bands, captivating song-writing is where they build their sound (Vanden Plas, Threshold, Ayreon). For others, sheer technical prowess will be sufficient to win over their fans. Ship of Theseus never really capitalises on either of these, instead just sort of existing in its own little bubble.

There are some good moments to be had here: both “The Cage” and “Reflections in the Mirror” ramp up the more aggressive side of the music, with those down-tuned guitars melding with forceful tempos and downright ferocious bursts, straying more towards Helstar territory. “Blue” also works wonders with the addition of female vocals, adding a lot of flavour, especially during the chorus.

Cards on the table, prog metal isn’t my favourite form of music, so in honesty I might not be the target audience for this. But for what my take is worth, The Paradox has some good tracks and moments, but needs to push that further to stand out.

Video:

Review by:

Kieron Hayes

 

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