Reasons Behind – Project M.I.S.T.

Rating: 4/5
Label: Scarlet Records
Released: 21st August 2020
Buy Album: https://reasonsbehind.bigcartel.com/products
Band Website: https://www.facebook.com/ReasonsBehind/

Band Line-up:

Elisa Bonafè – Vocals
Gabriele Sapori – Guitars
Michele Cavalca – Bass
Andrea Gardani – Drums

Tracklisting:

1 – Unplugged
2 – Fireflies In The Wind
3 – A Hidden Thread
4 – Shades Of Neon
5 – Ghostwired
6 – Beyond The Black
7 – Living A Lie
8 – Binary Stars
9 – Between Here And Awake
10 – (E)met
11 – No Dawn To Come

Review:

Over the course of their career, Reasons Behind have definitely evolved from a straightforward symphonic metal band with some electronic influences into a more synth-oriented sounding outfit. I’ve been a fan of symphonic bands such as Amaranthe and Within Temptation for a while, and most recently I developed a taste for dark synthwave in the vein of Dance With The Dead and Carpenter Brut. So, listening through this album, I was delighted to discover a combination of the two styles; a perfect marriage of pulsating synths and drum beats with chugging, heavy guitar riffs, and modern metal sensibilities.

On their brand new sophomore record Project M.I.S.T. the final result is simply outstanding: the crystal-clear, powerful and euphoric voice of Elisa Bonafè heard throughout dances between catchy and enthralling melodies (expertly conceived by the bandleader, songwriter, and guitarist Gabriele Sapori), combined with both modern Swedish metal and metalcore riffing and immersed in the sonic palette of trance and Eurodance. The stunning album artwork created by Gustavo Sazes (Amaranthe, Epica, Arch Enemy) showcases immediately what is in store, reminiscent of early noughties science fiction films, such as Minority Report and I Robot, that dealt with human emotions, a desire for knowledge, love, and acceptance.

As the album begins, the thumping rhythm section bursts into life introducing ‘Fireflies in the Wind’ as an explosive guitar riff that wouldn’t seem out of place on Dream Theater’s Train of Thought album crunches through in the pitch-perfect mix, complete with gliding synth parts that compliment the track and the entire record beautifully. ‘A Hidden Thread’ and ‘Binary Stars’ are bombastic slabs of thick synth mixed with stratospheric chorus vocal lines. ‘Between Here and Alive’ is presented against a dreamscape with clips from previous tracks fading in and out across its runtime, and it’s an interesting concept track to help tie the overall narrative together.

‘Shades of Neon’ has some excellent and impressive guitar work and yet another volcanic chorus; Project M.I.S.T. is overflowing with memorable vocal sections and choruses that are begging for a live performance. ‘Ghostwired’ and ‘Beyond the Black’ are much the same; hitting heavy and melodically in equal measure.

Project: M.I.S.T. is a beautifully made concept album about love, life, and reality, enriched by lyrics that depict all the facets of human existence: a modern metal sci-fi emotional rollercoaster that will take the listener through a breathtaking journey, at times causing me to feel nostalgic for things I haven’t experienced. There are a lot of interesting melodies all over the record, and I can see myself revisiting this quite a lot over the coming weeks.

It’s a well-crafted, well-executed crossover symphonic metal album and Reasons Behind should be incredibly proud of it. If you’re a fan of bands such as EpicaAmaranthe, or Within Temptation, this is a must-listen, but if you are not, there’s probably not much here for you. Give it a try if EDM-inspired symphonic metal is your thing, you won’t be disappointed.

Review by Jack Merry

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