Epica - Requiem for the Indifferent
Nuclear Blast
Symphonic Metal
13 songs (72:55)
Release year: 2012
Epica, Nuclear Blast
Reviewed by Khelek

Requiem for the Indifferent has been getting some serious playing time on my stereo since its release way back in March, unfortunately it is only now that I have been able to put my thoughts on it into words. For those who are unfamiliar with the symphonic metal scene, Epica have been tearing it up since 2003. Anyone who enjoys this genre is certainly familiar with their unique take on the gothic/symphonic sound. They use epic symphonic and choral elements and the wonderful operatic vocals of frontwoman Simone Simons, often paired with the death growls of rhythm guitarist Mark Jansen. This is the band's fifth studio album, and while it is quite similar to their past work, they keep the quality high and manage to avoid simply repeating themselves.

Right from the start, the guitar soloing from Isaac Delahaye on Monopoly on Truth is enjoyable, as is the rest of the guitar work. I really like the contrast of the vocals as well, from the operatic ones to the rough growls of Jansen. I don't think that the symphonic elements add a whole lot to the sound on this track. They're just "there" don't seem to really add anything special, but then again Epica have never been a band to allow the symphonic elements to overpower the more metal side of their music too much. Storm the Sorrow reminds me of something that Within Tempatation would do. The very accessible melody of this song, especially the chorus, is what defines it, and once again the symphonic elements are not extremely noticeable. I really enjoy listening to Simone Simons' voice; it is truly beautiful as always. The contrast with Jansen's death vocals is also excellent once again. Delirium is up next, and while it isn't a bad ballad, it's not very interesting either. Fortunately Internal Warfare gets things moving again, and the title track continues the heavy hitting riffs and intricate melodies that run through this album. The Middle Eastern inspired sounds that begin the song are used very well to create the atmosphere, as are the rest of the symphonic elements. Once again I am most impressed by the guitar work and the vocals, although the drumming of Arien van Weesenbeek is also stepped up in this track. I like the way Deep Water Horizon starts off with calm acoustic guitar and then slowly the symphonic elements begin to add more depth. This song is a perfect example of a symphonic metal ballad done right. It is slow and melodic without sacrificing too much heaviness. The guitar soloing once again fits perfectly. The last song I want to mention is Avalanche. It begins calmly, softly building tension with the symphonic elements as the vocals of Simons come in with clean electric guitar. The picture formed in my mind is of snow beginning to slide and tumble down a mountain. By the time the heavy riffs come in with the death growls I was on the edge of my seat, and it just gets better from there as the song builds in intensity; Avalanche is certainly an appropriate title.

If you're already a fan of this band I am sure you have acquired this album by now and enjoyed it. For those who have not, or are not familiar with Epica (or even symphonic metal at all), but would like to give their music a listen, I highly recommend this. It may not match the sheer intensity of 2009's Design Your Universe, but it's very close. Requiem proves that Epica are still one of the most talented acts in the genre today.

Killing Songs :
Monopoly on Truth, Requiem for the Indifferent, Deep Water Horizon, Avalanche
Khelek quoted 86 / 100
Other albums by Epica that we have reviewed:
Epica - The Quantum Enigma reviewed by Joel and quoted 93 / 100
Epica - Design Your Universe reviewed by Kyle and quoted 89 / 100
Epica - The Divine Conspiracy reviewed by Marty and quoted 85 / 100
Epica - Consign To Oblivion reviewed by Ian and quoted 90 / 100
Epica - We Will Take You With Us reviewed by Ben and quoted no quote
To see all 7 reviews click here
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