THRESHOLD - Subsurface

Threshold - Subsurface

9 songs
58:30 minutes
***** *


For more than ten years, Threshold have been the kings of British prog metal. As a matter of fact, while most prog bands from England were still rooted in the retro rock movement of the 70s, with bands like Marillion and Pendragon as the pioneers, Threshold were focussing from their very beginning on a more gritty kind of prog metal, becoming quickly the British counterpart to Dream Theater.

Subsurface is their seventh album so far, and I promise I really wanted to like it, but... Already the opener Mission Profile disappointed my expectations. This is just way too melodic for my taste. Where proper reactionary prog bands need at least five minutes before you can even hint at a something like a chorus, this song kind of starts with an ever recurring sing-a-long part. So is this still prog? Surprisingly yes, because the average length of more than six minutes per song allows a lot of complicated technical showing off, and it's always then when I like the band best.

As far as I know, this album has been really hyped by a lot of reviewers, but instead of doubting my own taste when it comes to music, I rather stand awed that nowadays you can come up with a combination of hyper-melodic metal and ultra-progressive instrumentation, and still reach a lot of people... probably thanks to Dream Theater who made this genre possible in the first place. I am happy for Threshold that their special brand of melodic metal is so appealing to a lot of people, but I rather stay clear of this and prefer my progressive music with less obvious melodies and more technical intricacies.

Back to Reviews