Phantom Shadow is MaSu's latest album, and their first foray into a concept album. How well do they pull it off?
In all fairness, it feels like a mixed bag. Not that the album is bad, hell no, but being a concept album, well...
To be perfectly honest, the greatest weakness is that it's too Broad Strokes
. To be fair, Robert did say it was meant to be that way, but aside from the few interludes (which to me just interrupt the flow of the album ), the story is never explained in any great detail. This results in fans having to piece things together themselves, with a little help from the band. To this day, I still have trouble piecing together the overarching plot of the album, and of the Hubnester saga as well. And I still
am not sure of the persona of Beyond Good and Evil.
...That doesn't sound very encouraging, does it? What would be the redeeming traits of the album, you ask? That's an easy question to answer.
The music fucking rocks is all I need to say. Credit where credit is due: for all the cloudiness of the entire story, it very well harkens back to the olden days where each song was a unique landscape of its own. The album's music is full of Call Backs
to older songs: among other things, Renegades'
beginning is reminiscent of Nemesis
, The Second One's
main riff is pretty much Indiscriminate Murder's
, and I swear The Villain of this Story
uses a sample from Soundtrack to the Rebellion
Best of all, these factors make a majority of songs an actual treat
: only very few songs feel lame to me, and Beyond Good and Evil
, The Second One
and Hubnester Rising
have all reached my list of top songs.
In all finality, it deserves an 8/10. To paraphrase someone from the band's forums, it mixes MaSu's maturity as a band with their old-school sound. Get the album ASAP, you won't regret it.