Genius is the brainchild of the extremely talented guitarist Daniele Liverani. Daniele started studying classical music and piano already at the age of 6. Over the years he has recorded a lot of instrumental albums as well as participating in bands like Empty Tremor and Khymera. In 2002 he released the first chapter of the Genius trilogy together with drummer Dario Ciccioni and a lot of different vocalist as "actors" in this musical saga. Five years later the time has come for the final part of this story, suitably entitled The Final Surprise.
I must admit that I haven't dug deep into to the lyrical context of this saga, mainly because I didn't find it especially intriguing. The musical aspect of things however I can tell you a lot more about. This is quite technical but melodic progressive metal and the amount of different vocalists makes it really sound like a rock opera and the vocalist included on Genius is nothing but fantastic. Just dropping a few names like Jörn Lande (Masterplan, Jorn etc.), DC Cooper (Silent Force) and Daniel Gildenlöw (Pain Of Salvation) should be enough to explain that the vocal department is the absolute highlight on this disc.
Episode 3 kicks off with the quite technical, yet melodic Toy Warehouse, a track that has grown from being quite interesting to really good after living with this record for a month by now. On No More Chances the Norwegian Jörn Lande steps into action and this one is the catchiest tune on this effort with a chorus that clicks at once. Save Me From My Destiny up next is a slow 11 minute piece without the melody work as its predecessors and I have found myself losing concentration when listening to this track. Jump Off This Train wouldn't be especially spectacular if it wasn't for the magical vocals delivered by Daniel Gildenlöw and DC Cooper. This fact is actually a constant factor on The Final Surprise, the song writing is nothing special at all but the musicians involved has added all the splendour they are in possession of and the final result is more than decent. I must say however that the storyteller that shows up at the end of every song is extremely annoying and destroys the natural flow.
I haven't heard the first two episodes of the Genius saga but I can without a doubt recommend the final episode to our dear readers. You won't be knocked off your feet but give it some time and I'm sure that you will find it quite enjoyable. The vocals provided alone make the record worth buying and I can only imagine if these musicians had somewhat stronger material, if dreams only would come true
(The vocalists that participate in Genius 3 are as follows: DC Cooper, Daniel Gildenlöw, Jörn Lande, Andrea Datwyler, Eric Martin, Toby Hitchcock and Oliver Hartmann.)
also review of: A Human
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