Tellus Requiem - Invictus (The 11th Hour)
Nightmare Records
Progressive Melodic Metal / Progressive Power Metal
10 songs (58:40)
Release year: 2013
Nightmare Records
Reviewed by Metalette

Tellus Requiem melds both futuristic and archaic elements into the distinctive sound that is Invictus (The 11th Hour). For every heavy guitar riff there is an elegant piano played, and synth is artfully mixed with strings and grand orchestration. There is never a moment of complacency on the album, as the music is ever evolving and transitioning, keeping a listener on their toes.

Every instrument played exhibits incredible musicianship. Riveting synth leads are featured in several songs, such as Twilight Hour and Sands of Gold. I find the drums throughout the entire album to be fantastic – they mix up the beats in wonderful ways, keep the music satisfyingly heavy, and throw in some wild fills during parts such as the bridge of Eden Burns or the intro track Ab Aeterno. And the guitarwork in general is pure metal bliss to mine ears. The solos are shredding, tasteful, melodic, and downright legendary, and the riffs that pepper the entire album are tasty as hell.

My favorite part of the entire album (which lucky for me is throughout the whole thing) is vocalist Ben Rodgers. The dude’s got a voice on him! His styles on the album range from classic metal wailing to rich, ballady singing (listen to Reflections Remain and Tranquility), and even a few expertly-done falsetto notes. Also, there are some great vocal harmonies done in songs like Reflections Remain, as well as Red Horizon. You know what? I would really love to hear Ben Rodgers sing in a glam metal band. That’d be sweet. But really, his vocals did remind me of a glam style throughout much of Invictus (The 11th Hour) and it was great! It added yet another surprising dimension to an already dynamic album.

Songwise, I’m especially crazy about Eden Burns, Reflections Remain, and Redemption. Eden Burns has some Arabic sounds to it, including exotic female singing mixed with heavy metal riffs. There’s parts of the song that thrash like nobody’s business, and a chorus that slows things down and really showcases the lead vocals. The crystal clear guitar of Reflections Remain is ethereal and haunting, and as I’ve said before, the vocals are wonderfully rich. The chorus takes it to a whole new level of epic, with pure vocal power and harmonies. Redemption keeps it heavy and interesting, transitioning between a blasting verse and a more melodic, sinister chorus. Plus a gorgeous solo.

I think there’s really something for almost everyone in the metal spectrum on this album. It’s full, vibrant, both dark and light, and musically awesome. I’ll be looking forward to further releases from Tellus Requiem!

Killing Songs :
Eden Burns, Reflections Remain, Redemption
Metalette quoted 85 / 100
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