Creation's End

A New Beginning

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After lending his powerful pipes to numerous name bands across the globe, including New York's Riot and Germany's Masterplan, singer Mike DiMeo came home to roost, as it were, when he became the frontman of a brand-new progressive metal band named Creation's End. Not only was the group's 2010 debut album, A New Beginning, tailor-made to suit DiMeo's talents (despite being composed primarily by guitarist/keyboardist Rudy Albert and drummer Dario Rodriguez), but the involvement of lead guitarist and longtime James LaBrie associate Marco Sfogli made Dream Theater comparisons unavoidable, yet welcomingly so. Power and subtlety, virtuosity and emotion, complexity and accessibility, brutal heaviness and high pomp: all of these contrasting qualities mesh impressively though not always seamlessly throughout the album's (naturally) epic-length compositions. What they lack in terms of cohesion only reflects the sheer challenge of the material, obviously, but Creation's End also distinguish themselves by exploring darker textures and heavier riffs than their most obvious inspirational godfathers (not unlike Symphony X and Evergrey), and they certainly come close to achieving perfection on album highlights "Of Shadow and Flame," "Dissociate," and "Forsaken." Plus, with Mike Portnoy's abrupt and shocking departure from Dream Theater, progressive metal enthusiasts will be needing all the distractions and emotional support they can get to weather such traumatic times, and this situation will certainly be aided by the suddenly aptly named A New Beginning.

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