Conception - In Your Multitude
Noise Records
Power/Progressive Metal
10 songs (49'59")
Release year: 1995
Noise Records
Reviewed by Erik

Intelligent metal is a real treat when done properly. It's easy to point at, say, progressive metal, and claim that genre as being intelligent as a whole, but it's not that simple. True, one might argue that most prog metal by necessity requires more forethought in the planning and execution than other genres, but that also is not the absolute rule either. Intelligence can be found in all areas of music, in some cases buried under the surface. However, one band that clearly brought such qualities to the surface for several glorious years in the '90s was Conception.

Hopping straight from their debut album The Last Sunset over to their third release In Your Multitude in 1995 gives you a blatant representation of the band's progress over just four years. Of course today fans tend to pick this album and its followup Flow as the pinnacle of Conception's all-too-short discography, and certainly they are two of the finest back-to-back metal albums from that time period. European prog/power just didn't get much better than this!

Every single track has vivid life and crackling energy thanks to vocalist Roy Khan, who more than proves his mettle here -- he is second to none when delivering pure atmosphere and emotion. All of the prowling, razor-edged perfection and technical prowess is on display from start to finish, from all four members. Nothing is held back, from the driving opening moments of Under A Mourning Star, which pauses and then rips with authority, all the way to the final majestic moments of the methodical closing title track.

In truth, this is another release where every moment shines, but even so, some stand out just a bit higher than others. After the fast and heavy opener, the equally solid Missionary Man follows up with a solid crunch fueling the tempo. The always-impressive Tore Ostby is quicker and more intricate than ever as he lays down wicked riff after amazing solo. Throwing in his usual Spanish/Flamenco touch, along with even some folk and blues, he provides a true progressive touch to an excellent songwriting and production team. Next up is a rather melancholy track called Retrospect that showcases sad yet technical melodies, followed by the slow, churning Guilt.

Roy and Tore pull out all the ballad-type stops with the heartwrenching Sanctuary, featuring some great acoustic work, and then bring out their epic track A Millions Gods just to put any doubts about their prog-awesomeness to rest. With yet more Latin-influenced segments alternating against atmospheric keyboard passages and blinding solos, it's just a flat-out astounding track. It should be mentioned that Ingar Amlien on bass and Arve Heimdal's precision behind the kit only solidify the performances here, as these are a group of young musicians with a criminally under-recognized writing and playing ability.

Some Wounds keeps the pace moving with an over-the-top chugging rhythm and stratospheric chorus that is impossible to keep from headbanging to, and Carnal Comprehension starts off with relatively mellow verses before moving into more sharpened riffs -- and then keeps alternating to great effect. The next track Solar Serpent does the nearly the same thing, but in a different way, featuring spine-tingling vocals from Khan that seem to reach outer space.

Only after the last note dies and you are left breathless, overwhelmed by the sheer mastery and expressive, flowing musicianship can you fully appreciate what Conception have created here. In Your Multitude stands tall against the best that Queensryche, Fates Warning, or Vanden Plas has to offer. You simply cannot make a case for progressive-tinged metal masterpieces without including the majority of Conception's work, especially this horizon-broadening release. A must-have!

Killing Songs :
All except possibly Retrospect and Guilt
Erik quoted CLASSIC
Other albums by Conception that we have reviewed:
Conception - Flow reviewed by Erik and quoted CLASSIC
Conception - Parallel Minds reviewed by Erik and quoted 92 / 100
Conception - The Last Sunset reviewed by Erik and quoted 86 / 100
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