Edition: 60
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Album reviews:
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01. Family Portrait
02. Guardian Angel
03. Lost
04. How Much More
05. Silence of the Night
06. The Gift of Tears
07. Anat
The Dutch band Ulysses was founded by guitarist Sylvester Vogelenzang de Jong and keyboard player Ron Mozer in November 1998. After the demo Eclectic and the debut album Symbioses (2003) Ulysses releases their 2nd full length album The Gift of Tears in March 2009. The current line up is Sylvester Vogelenzang de Jong (guitar), Ron Mozer (keyboards), Casper (bass), René van Haaren (drums) and Michael Hos (Vocals).

The Gift of Tears is an album with emotional progressive metal that is rather keyboard oriented. Besides the heavy progressive guitar riffs there are quite often keyboard riffs like Guardian Angel with a very bombastic break.
The atmosphere is rather melancholic because of the psychedelic influences caused by the bombastic keyboards and the somewhat depressed sounding vocals. It takes a little time to get used to the vocals. The rather psychedelic sound and the heavy progressive riffs form the typical sound of the album. Inherent to the psychedelic progressive metal is the length of the songs, most songs takes more than 7 minutes, 2 songs even almost 14 minutes.

The songs are all short stories about joy and sadness in life. This is best heard on the epic Anat, this song is one of the longest tracks (14:52 minutes) and tell the story of 2 young parents who lose their daughter at the age of 1 year because of a brain tumour. The emotions (fear, despair, anger) are performed superb. This song is really impressive, a great structure, a terrific solo and a touching story. In short a master piece. Gooseflesh!
With Lost Ulysses has a beautiful progressive metal ballad with a great solo. The title song is a superb progressive melodic metal song.

The Gift of Tears is a progressive metal album with an emotional depth; a must for every progressive metal fan. Just buy this album, it’s absolutely is worth it.

  Rating: 82 /100

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