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Aria – Generator Of Evil


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After Aria had released the very successful ‘Blood for Blood’ album in 1991 some very dramatic things happened. Due to serious crisis in post-communistic Russia, the band almost split up. After many twists and turns, they finally released ‘Night Is Shorter Than Day’ in 1995, which was solid, but showed some lack of focus and mediocrity. Nevertheless, it was successful enough to launch Aria's career into heights once again, so Aria could devote themselves to writing new stuff in peace. Exactly this lack of pressure and letting the songs to flow smoothly, without forcing and seeking for instant hits made their seventh album ‘Generator Of Evil’, released in 1998, so damn good. Everything sounds incredibly coherent and well-thought and all that's left for you is just sit back, relax and enjoy the music. That's one aspect, here's another one – Aria never before sounded so mature as they did on ''Generator of Evil'', and it perfectly makes sense. Here's why – the '80s are gone, so is trademark Maiden-influenced heavy metal that Aria used to play. New times inexorably ask for adapting, or Aria would most certainly become part of the past. Thus Aria adapted, and their change was much better than the ones of their heroes, Maiden and Priest (The same year when this album saw the light of the day, Maiden released ''Virtual XI'', the year before Priest ‘graced’ us with ''Jugulator''. Enough said.). And third, the crucial reason – Aria became original. True, Maiden melodies and harmonies are present here and there, but 95% of this album is pure Aria, no doubt about it. This change of sound is my next topic to discuss. So what is the essence of Aria that was shown in here? In a nutshell, it's a mix of progressive and heavy metal. You might think ''Hey, that's exactly what Maiden did on ''The X Factor'' album!'', but it isn't. While Maiden focused on writing long, technically demanding songs, Aria incorporated progressive elements into standard heavy metal tunes. This bold move turned out to be the best thing that they could possibly do, since they managed to hit two birds with one stone – their interpretation of progressive music doesn't bore your ass like many prog artists do, and they irreversibly left Maiden style for good. I would even go as far and claim that, along with their debut ''Megalomania'', this is the most unique album Aria ever made. In every single song you can find some elements that prove my point, whether it's intro, main riff, chorus, solo, whatever – there's always some nifty, classy touch of Dubinin/Holstinin songwriting genius put to leave stunning feeling on a listener. These touches often aren't easy to be found, but if you listen to this album enough times and keep attention, you'll notice it. There you have another virtue that every heavy metal classic must have – it isn't disposable, and it has something seducing that makes you get back to it over and over again. I don't know about you, but I call it art. Of course there are some slightly weaker spots, such as ‘'Run for the Sun’' and a couple of moments in several other songs but most of the tracks are real killers. For example listen to the final song ‘Closed Circle’. Soft, beautiful melodies on acoustic guitars invite you on this one epic hell of a song. Kipelov's intro vocal lines might very much be the best emotional and sentimental performance of his career, it's just overwhelming. Did I ever mention that he is one of the best vocalists in heavy metal? The rest of the song isn't a slouch either, with monstrously epic (though a bit repetitive) chorus, splendid solo and soothing ending. Still, you can't fully appreciate the song if you don't understand the lyrics, they are amazing and deal with meaning and point of life. Here's one verse just to show you what I mean: ''It's too sad to be immortal, the same faces day after day, the same stupid answers on question: "Why do we live?" Not all wolf cubs would become wolves, not every stroke becomes a strike. There is a strange skill to fly to flames to stay there forever.'' I think that this is by far the most underrated Aria's album. Period. I urge everyone to do yourself a favour and listen to this incredible album and this incredible band. Aria is definitely one of my biggest discoveries in heavy metal, and I'm glad I found this treasure. My highest recommendations. Track listing: 1. Behold 2. Dirt 3. Deserter 4. Torture With Silence 5. Run For The Sun 6. Deseption 7. Hermit 8. Sunset 9. Diabolic Heart 10. Closed Circle

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