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Pagans Mind – Enigmatic Calling

Label: LMP
Format: CD
Released: 2005
Reviewed By: Rich Catino


At first listen, mostly given the keyboard sound, many are going to pre judge this talented band as Dream Theater rip offs. So not the case! Yes they are influenced by Dream Theater, but Pagans Mind are not as complicated or acrobatic with their arrangements. What makes Pagans very appealing, and where I feel what makes them of one of the best in the Prog Metal genre, is that the guitar riffs drive the songs. With that, the moments of less aggressive downtime are not too long causing boredom, two qualities that Dream Theater kind of lacks and suffers from at times.

 

Also included in their creative arsenal, Pagans Mind’s style incorporates moments of jazz like guitar pieces and piano (‘Supremacy Our Kind’), as well as varied acoustic and heavy interludes. Yes this may “sound” complicated, but with every time and tempo change throughout each song is a smooth transition which merges perfectly into the next segment of progression. Pagans Mind finds balance between technicality and simplicity to form catchy, yet musically at times mind blowing musicianship inside a well written song. I don’t know how they do it, but the formula is all them and works sooo well.

For example take ‘Enigmatic Mission’, with a killer lead riff and a fast paced rhythm, a basic breakdown, and then your hit with the head spinning guitar solo. Both tasty yet appropriate to the tracks melody. Check out that riff to ‘Entrance to Infinity’ and ‘Coming Home’, both propelled by a driving rhythm, nice.

Vocals are equally smooth and soulful yet strong with a chorus that caries each song and allows most tracks to be memorable. I also love the way their use of keyboards really accentuates and creates dramatics (‘Taken’), bringing out certain areas to each track. Balance and proportion is what Pagans Mind are all about.

At this point I am still in favor of their second disc “Celestial Entrance” but this is strong as hell with heavier guitars. “Enigmatic Calling” is a step in the right direction and I hope they continue the creative momentum without changing their sound.

 
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