A Bard’s Eye View: The Holographic Principle


The Holographic Principle

A Look at the new Epica album

 

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There were three albums that were released on 30 September 2016, but Epica’s album was the one that stuck out the most to me.  The Holographic Principle is not only my favorite Epica album since Design Your Universe, but it may be my favorite Epica album period.  Two years have passed since the last album and I feel like some of the reservations I had about their music growing soft has been alleviated with this release.

“Eidola” begins the album in the same way that every Epica album begins, with a symphonic and epic intro that prefaces the first single we will hear, “Edge of the Blade”.  Right from the beginning we can see that the symphonic elements and operatic choir will be much more prominent this go around.

 

 

“A Phantasmic Parade” features some pretty cool singing from Simone Simons, some styles we haven’t really encountered from her yet.  A lot of really catchy choruses are on this album and this one is certainly no exception.  “Universal Death Squad” is the other single from the album and was released back in July.  There is a counterpart on the bonus edition of the album called “Universal Love Squad”.

 

 

This is the part of the album where I feel like it really takes off and takes on the identity that it ends up having.  “Divide and Concur” has a real cinematic wartime kind of feel to it with some awesome piano and orchestration.  “Beyond the Matrix” is one of my favorite songs on this album.  It has some awesome moments and the music is very movie score in nature.  It also features a pretty sweet guitar solo towards the end.

“Once Upon a Nightmare” has two minutes of stringed instruments that seem to pluck at the heart quite a bit.  This haunting guitar and vocal melody comes out and makes this song my second favorite on the album.  “The Cosmic Algorithm” is my favorite on the album.  It’s one of the shortest at less than five minutes but it packs quite a punch and feels the most like classic Epica in my opinion.

“Ascension – Dream State Armageddon” is another haunting song.  Another five minute song that I absolutely adore.  This one is one that showcases her singing capabilities very well and Mark Jansen provides a good complement to her.

“Dancing in a Hurricane” is another song that has a bonus counterpart.  It is called “Dancing in a Gypsy Camp”.  This song does a very good job of making me think of the title, both literally and figuratively.  “Tear Down Your Walls” is another track that reminds me of older Epica, particularly the intro of the piano and the accompaniment of the specific symphonic instruments followed by blast beats and power chords.  It features some interesting vocal stylings that haven’t really been present in previous Epica releases, though.

The title track, “The Holographic Principle – A Profound Understanding”, is an eleven a half minute song that reminds me a little bit of The Boondock Saints soundtrack.  It’s definitely an epic piece of work and worth a listen.

Opeth and The Agonist released albums as well, I haven’t decided if I will cover them or not but they’re defintiely worth checking out.  See you next time!

-Ryan

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