Epica – The Solace System

Release Date: Out Now

Label: Nuclear Blast

The Dutch symphonic metal titans, Epica, return with their newest EP, The Solace System. The six song collection, comprised of used songs from the bands brilliant The Holographic Principle release, was released on September 1st via Nuclear Blast, marking another big release for the label in what is shaping up to be one of their biggest and best years to date.
The Solace System as a whole is a lovely little collection of songs that really highlight what is great about Epica. Their dual vocals, lead strong by one of the most beautiful voices in modern metal, Simone Simons, overwhelming choral and orchestral sections and the sheer heaviness that works so perfectly well in contrast with the more symphonic elements that Epica are often credited with. The EP would be the perfect starting point for someone who has never before listened to Epica, allowing them to dip their toes into the world of this band, however not yet experiencing them fully.

The songs themselves are strong. Stronger than most bands put out on their full albums. They manage to demonstrate the sheer talent of the members and could really hold their own in the newest live set, standing strong against songs from the bands. I personally would be over the moon if Immortal Melancholy made its way into the live set, giving Simmons the chance to show everyone why she is hailed as such a remarkable vocalist. Equally, if the albums closing track Decoded Poetry, a subtly thrash influenced riff heavy banger of a track, makes its way into the live set I would be more than happy to see them lay waste to any and all crowds with it.

Really, there isn’t much to say other than if you have liked Epica’s releases to date, in particular The Holographic Principle, you’ll love this. Think of it as an extension on an already lovely house. If you have never given Epica a chance, this is the best example of their talents, boiled down and served up on a silver platter. Its brilliant for fans and none fans alike.

Rating: 8/10

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