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The Way I Am - Apocalypse? No Way!

The Way I Am – CD Review
Apocalypse? No Way!

Apocalypse? No Way!



EP Info
Symphonic Progressive Rock
6 Tracks
English Lyrics

I’m not easy to please. Some people who know me say I’m too easy to please because I love such a wide range of music. It’s true I split my love among classical music, opera, jazz, classic rock, progressive rock and many of the dozens of genres and sub-genres of metal. For that reason, however, I’m fairly picky about what I really enjoy. Whatever type of music it is, it has to be damn good. Isn’t that so for all of us?

The Way I Am, a new French band, is difficult to classify by genre. They describe their music with the sweeping tag of modern metal. In fact it goes beyond metal and hauls in the best from alternative, experimental and progressive rock and metal. The result is a short but deliciously sweet debut EP, only 22 minutes long but well worth every second of it. It deeply pleases my picky taste across the musical spectrum. This is classy, creative, extremely catchy music.

The closest equivalents I can think of are District 97, a crossover prog rock band whose compositions embrace jazz and blues; and stOrk, one of the most enjoyable prog metal bands I heard last year. If you were to combine the sounds of those two bands and you’d have something as refreshingly different as The Way I Am.

There is another parallel in the ways District 97, stOrk and The Way I Am approach their performances. All three bands have superb, powerful vocalists backed by enormously talented musicians. The challenge for any band endowed with such rich talent is to keep everything in balance. They would all certainly want to showcase their singers. At the same time they wouldn’t want to stifle the instrumental performances. The recordings by all three bands clearly show how thoughtfully and cleverly they worked through their arrangements to highlight the best by every member.

Saturne, vocalist for The Way I Am, has a deeper voice than stOrk’s VK Lynne, more like the voice of District 97’s Leslie Hunt. From Saturne’s performance on Apocalypse? No Way! I gladly offer her a place with VK Lynne and Leslie Hunt in my Cabinet of Greatly Beloved Singers. Like the other two ladies, she can really belt out the rawkin’ parts of a song and caress your eardrums gently during the softer passages. Her range is admirable, and she has another of the vocal qualities I respect and admire – no vibrato in the long, sustained notes. That is a good measure of singing skill and hours upon hours of practice.

Saturne adds darkness to her singing on the second half of the EP. Her growling skill would suit the hardest death metal bands. She limits her use of dark vocals, though, which is good because most of the music isn’t dark in that way. The overall tone of the EP is somewhat melancholic, but not heavy.

The song choice and track selection on the EP is very well planned. Every song begins differently and flows in its own direction. The music will switch engagingly, changing from pounding guitar and bass riffs like you’d hear in 1980s heavy metal or hard rock, to ethereal keyboard with Saturne’s voice in its higher register floating above the instrumental melody line.

I eagerly await the band’s first full-length release. Apocalypse? No Way! is a beautiful introduction for a genuinely class act.

Rating: 9/10.

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