Independent power metal band Helion Prime has apparently had a change of heart in regards to the singles for its new album, Question Everything. One week ago today, the band debuted what it had alleged was going to be the last single for the album, which released today. However, the band did an about face on that decision today with the debut of the album’s fifth single ‘Question Everything’ and its companion video. The musical arrangement featured in the song and the rest of the album’s singles (and its other tracks not turned singles) form the record’s cornerstone. They will be addressed shortly. The album’s overarching lyrical theme that accompanies the infectious musical arrangements builds around and on that cornerstone to make the presentation that much more appealing. The record’s sequencing caps off its most important elements and ensures the album’s success in its own way, which will also be addressed later. Each item noted here is important in its own way to the whole of Question Everything. All things considered, they make the record a presentation that will appeal to any power metal fan.
Helion Prime’s brand new album Question Everything is a presentation that easily holds its own against any record from the band’s more well-known counterparts, such as Dragonforce, Unleash The Archers, and Epica. That is proven in part through the album’s musical arrangements. The arrangements in question are pure power metal at its finest. At the same time though, there are moments that add in a little something extra for audiences to enjoy. Case in point is the arrangement featured in the album’s opener, ‘The Final Theory.’ The partnering of the guitar and keyboard arrangements lends itself to comparisons to works from In Flames. At the same time, the similarity to works from Unleash The Archers and Epica is just as evident. The balance of those influences and sounds makes for an arrangement that makes for a strong start to the album. It is just one of the moments that offers audiences something extra in this record. ‘Madame Mercury,’ the record’s second song, is another way in which the album gives audiences something extra in its arrangements.
The musical arrangement featured ‘Madame Mercury’ takes more of a hard rock approach than power metal. Yes, the power metal approach is just as obvious as here as at any other point in the album, but that more mainstream, hard rock approach is just as audible. That the band continued to take a new direction here and still manage to make the two distinctly different styles work together so well is worthy of its own applause. It serves to make the album that much more appealing for audiences and is not the last of the moments that does this, either. ‘Kong at the Gates/The Forbidden’ is another example of how the album goes beyond the band’s power metal roots to give audiences something extra.
‘Kong at the Gates/The Forbidden’ takes Helion Prime’s familiar power metal approach and adds a touch of symphonic metal a la Symphony X to the mix. That is evidenced through the string arrangements and the pounding drums that open the song. Event the vocal delivery of singer Mary Zimmer is noticeably different here from that of any of the album’s other songs. It isn’t nearly as wide open and operatic as at those points. Yes, there is a touch of that approach, but there is more of a controlled approach here. That, coupled with the equally controlled work of the guitars and time keeping makes for an arrangement that stands on its own merits while helping to build the album’s musical foundation in its own right. When this arrangement is considered along with the other noted arrangements and the rest of the album’s compositions, the whole of the album’s musical content leaves no question about its importance to the record’s whole. It is just one part of what makes the album so appealing. The lyrical content that accompanies the record’s musical arrangements builds even more on that foundation.
The lyrical content that is featured throughout the 56-minute album adds its own interest to the presentation because it so unique. It does something that many other bands do, but also that so few do at the same time. It takes a similar approach to that of say, Sabaton with its historical focus, making it familiar (and in turn, welcome) to power metal fans. In the case of Sabaton, the chosen topic is military history. In the case of this record from Helion Prime, the band crafted songs for this record about famed figures, such as philosopher Socrates, NASA mathematician Katherine Johnson, Raymond Gosling, who took the first picture of DNA, and astronomer Galileo Gallilei. The noted figures (and those not noted here) were people who questioned everything at their time (thus the album’s title), including gender roles, societal beliefs and even scientific and religious views. This is an approach that is unlike even the works from Sabaton and so much other power metal music, whose lyrical content tends to focus on wizards and dragons. So again, what audiences get in the album’s lyrical content is a focus on real history, much like what they will get from fellow power metal band Sabaton. At the same time, it presents its own unique content separate from Sabaton and pretty much most other power metal bands. To that end, the lyrical content that is featured in this record makes for its own share of appeal. It still is not the last of the album’s most notable elements. The album’s sequencing rounds out its most important elements.
For the most pat, Question Everything maintains a very high energy throughout the course of its body. It does briefly break things up in the early bars of ‘The Gadfly’ with the old school classical guitar style approach there. From there, the album’s energy picks right back up until it reaches the last two songs, ‘Reawakening’ and ‘Kong at the Gates/The Forbidden.’ ‘Reawakening’ is really the most reserved that the album’s energy gets, and even that is still a relatively upbeat work. Though stylistically, it is reserved by comparison to the album’s other works. The album’s finale is slower in its opening bars, but from there really picks up and becomes a full-on operatic work. Simply put, Question Everything will appeal to audiences in terms of its sequencing because it keeps the energy flowing from its opening to its end. Even when it does pull back, that reservation is slight at best. That steady energy joins with the appeal in the album’s lyrical content and even more familiar style in its musical arrangements to make the whole a positive new presentation for Helion Prime. It collectively makes the album a presentation that holds its own easily against works from the band’s more well-known power metal counterparts.
Helion Prime’s new album Question Everything does not necessarily question the power metal formula. That is evident throughout the course of its presentation. Even despite that (and because of it) it still proves itself a work that will appeal to the most devoted power metal purists. That is due in part to the record’s largely familiar stylistic approach to the musical arrangements. They are familiar, but also have some other elements that give audiences a little something extra to enjoy. The record’s lyrical content takes a familiar route in terms of straying from the mainstream lyrical topics of relationships, religion, and politics. It takes a unique approach by focusing on historical figures, really as a way to encourage listeners to think for themselves. That ironically is a familiar topic in the mainstream world. So really, the lyrical content gives audiences the best of both worlds, mainstream and independent. The record’s sequencing puts the last touch to its presentation, ensuring its energy never lets up too much, and breaking things up just enough at the right points. Each noted item is important in its own right to the whole of the album. All things considered, they make the album a work that will appeal to any power metal purist.
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