OVERTURES – Artifacts (2016)
Seems the Mediterranean is a fertile ground when it comes to metal of all kinds, OVERTURES being one of them rocking away from Gorizia, South of Italy. The band is now ready to open the doors on their newest and third full length studio album “Artifacts“, signed to Sleaszy Rider Records (H’ART).
Overtures cook their own brand of prog metal with strong melodies and groove, injecting some power crunch throughout the album. This creates this pull that will keep you on the record. On top of their very own style mix, the production has this tendency to go bombastic, with some Avantasia feel here and there.
The vocals delivered by Michele Guaitoli sometimes remind me of classic Meatloaf with a metal edge. Yeah, I am not kidding and nothing wrong with it. His style is very atypical, if compared to the usual Progressive Metal outfits. And this might open their music to fans from other genres.
Whereas he can kick it up a notch too – just check out ‘Angry Animals’. But it is good to see that we got ourselves some counterweight to the screamers in the power metal genre.
You will find stellar guitar work on “Artifacts” too. Marco Falanga‘s contribution is outstanding, adding a distinct metal flavor to this set of tracks. Some of his solos just took your breath away. Right up there with the top, well done.
Further you will find Luka Klanjscek on bass and Andrea Cum on drums, supporting the album. Both of them delivering a very good performance, never overbearing, but present enough to be noticed.
‘Repentance’ is the first track you get on the album. And it takes off in a pretty stiff Power Metal manner, with a decent solo in the middle. Good start.
The catchy chorus line of the title song ‘Artifacts’ will follow you around like a friggin’ dog on a quest for a biscuit. At first the direction is not all that clear and it’s got this atypical song structure. But then it gets into the groove / melody and ends up to be pretty remarkable. By the way, check out the solo on this one, shredding up and down the fretboard. One of the highlights.
Other strong numbers are the melodic ‘As Candles We Burn’, and ‘Profiled’ creating a kind of ramping tension.
As a ballad-like, midtempo ‘Unshared Worlds’ is a pretty good one with very good lyrics, especially the refrain is well done. It’s a very commercial track ,and another indication of the band’s accessibility.
The 10+ minute epic and bombast laden ‘Teardrop’ is the most progressive track on the album, including different passages, a female guest vocalist to boot in a section and some cinematic atmospheres.
Then to end the album Overtures deliver a nice chunk of prog metal with the aforementioned ‘Angry Animals’ with Michele Guaitoli showing off his pipes at peak performance.
In conclusion, ‘Artifacts’ is really one refined piece of prog metal, delivered in the band’s own brand and style mix. Not one note astray in the whole production, recorded and mixed with a precision that is up there with the best.
Overtures are not your typically band in this genre, they try different things, lyrics, even they do not look like rockers.
If you like quirky Progressive Metal full of melodic hooks and turns, never leaving you bored at any moment, go for it. If you are not sure, give it a try anyway. Overtures are good, you know.
Very, very interesting band / album.
01 – Repentance
02 – Artifacts
03 – As Candles We Burn
04 – GO(L)D
05 – Profiled
06 – Unshared Worlds
07 – My Refuge
08 – New Dawn, New Dusk
09 – Teardrop
10 – Angry Animals
11 – Savior (Alternate Version)
Michele Guaitoli – Vocals
Marco Falanga – Guitar
Luka Klanjscek – Bass
Andrea Cum – Drums