Reviews from Alpha Draconis

September Reviews 06.09.10 - Posted in Alpha Draconis reviews

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EMERALD-Bassist Adriano Troiano bringt mit „Alpha Draconis“ bereits sein drittes Soloalbum heraus. Wer jetzt aber ultra-truen Heavy Metal erwartet, liegt nicht ganz richtig. Vielmehr bekommen wir eine Mischung aus Heavy Metal, Alternative und Prog zu hören. Diese hat es aber in sich und es gibt zehn äußerst kreative Songs zu hören. Die sind eigentlich sehr melodisch und catchy und haben durchaus als Gerüst klassischen Metal, der Gesang klingt aber eher nach Rockacts a la CREED etc. hat aber auch diverse Growls zu bieten. Songs wie das geile „Single Warning“, das mit einem Superriff gesegnete „Trial & Error“oder der Zwölfminüter “The Serpent With The Double-Edged Tongue” sind weitaus mehr als der übliche 08/15-Stoff, den man sonst so gewohnt ist. Vor allem die ausgetüftelten Gesangspassagen und Hooks haben es mir angetan. Eingängig ja aber nicht easy listening.
„Alpha Draconis“ - ein guter Tipp für alle, die es metallisch und dennoch nicht vorhersehbar mögen. Die Schweizer hätten soundtechnisch noch mehr herausholen sollen, da wäre sicher noch mehr Power drin. Die Songs allerdings überzeugen vollends und das ist die Hauptsache.
Ralf, 10 Punkte.

Distant Past
Alpha Draconis
by Dimitris Kontogeorgakos at 01 September 2010, 10:09 PM


This band is the result of Andriano Troiano searching for his musical identity that made him to leave EMERALD, enter the studio by himself and come out with the first DISTANT PAST album. That album was called "Science Reality" and saw the light of day in 2003. Instead of promoting this release Mr Troiano returned to the studio and two years after "Extraordinary Indication Of Unnatural Perception" (strange title) was out. By that point DISTANT PAST had a pretty solid lineup and lead to the creation of the third album entitled "Alpha Draconis". After three releases without taking a single breath, Troiano presents some more interesting music here…

The clean guitar intro of the album opener "Elemental Forces" lays down the classic Heavy Metal influences for DISTANT PAST. First of all, IRON MAIDEN comes to mind due to the bass guitar sound and the galloping rhythm that follows. But this song sounds heavier than MAIDEN and to my delight reveals some epic OMEN finishing touches linking the band to the US Metal scene. Despite the growling vocals that show up somewhere after the middle of the song, DISTANT PAST have strong bonding with the classic Metal scene and if you listen more carefully the following song, "The New Lordship", you will discover the underlying NWOBHM layer. Additionally, the vocals sound totally different from the previous track and that might add some confusion to the listener, especially during the first CD spins. Fortunately, the rest of the album continues in this classic Heavy Metal path by adding more melodies and keeping the epic meter in high levels. Additional credit should be given to the guitar duo of Schafer (no, he has nothing to do with ICED EARTH) and Curty; the guitar work is impressive with killer leads and solos while the groovy rhythm section justifies the aforementioned NWOBHM influences. In particular, during "The Interrogation" I could not stop thinking of ANGEL WITCH and this is a fact that cannot be ignored.

Although the promo package came without the lyrics I think this is a concept album dealing with those who have allegedly come from the Alpha Draconis star system (I do not want to get 'deeper' on this), hence the story-telling feeling one gets during the listening of the album. Also I believe that the (almost) 13 minutes of "The Serpent With The Double-Edged Tongue" is the best way to conclude this story; this track comes with a catchy main melody and nice guitar double harmonies that once again look over MAIDEN's side.

Despite the fact that DISTANT PAST might confuse you with the not so defined musical ID, "Alpha Draconis" is a well written album featuring mature compositions that give to the listener something to sink his teeth in and if more CD spins are provided this will grow and reveal its potentials. As you might have noticed this is a 'self release' so go ahead and check them out at their MySpace page and - who knows? - you may learn more about the strange star system…

Il progetto Distant Past nasce dalle ceneri degli svizzeri Emerald (che peraltro sembrano essere recentemente tornati in attività!) per iniziativa del bassista Adriano Troiano: “Alpha Draconis”, le cui registrazioni risalgono in buona parte al 2008, è il terzo disco della band. Ne viene fuori un album ben costruito, di base molto aspro e spigoloso (si ascolti, a titolo esemplificativo, “The Powers that be”), ma che contiene anche qualche passaggio acustico e fraseggi strumentali lunghi ed avvolgenti, da qualche parte fra gli Iced Earth e gli Iron Maiden. Ne ascoltiamo uno subito in apertura di “Elemental Forces”, che poi si sviluppa con la giusta dose di potenza. “Single Warning” ha un appeal quasi rock e radiofonico, e dopo il veloce strumentale “Demolition” il brano “Spare my Life” merita sicuramente la palma per il refrain più riuscito. Si chiude con la lunghissima “The Serpent with the double-edged Tongue”, il brano dove le influenze Iced Earth sono maggiormente presenti. Per gli amanti del power più roccioso.
(Renato de Filippis) Voto: 7/10