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Visionaire - Mystical Dominion

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This is Visionaire's first release and it is a hard one for me to review. First of all, Visionaire is a one-man band led by James Alan. James is a very talented musician and it shows on this album of slow to mid-paced death metal. However, I think that he still has a ways to go in making an album that fans can really get into. That may not make much sense unless you've heard "Mystical Dominion". Part of me likes this album. The other part of me has serious doubts. Like I said, the music is very well played. There is some very good guitar playing. Very beautiful at times, and sometimes quite haunting. The keyboards also stand out here. They provide some great atmosphere and emotion. However, sometimes on this disc I just get really bored. Part of it I think is the vocals. They are done well, but they are nothing special. They sometimes remind me of Mortification's current vocals (which I'm not too fond of), with sometimes a little more growl and sometimes less. Every once and a while James goes with just distorted clean vocals. After the first song or two, I was liking it pretty well, but after song 5, 6, 7...it started to get old. Standout songs I think would be the first three, "Tarot", "Mystical Dominion", and "Open Voyage". The worst cut is definitely "Lover's Serenade". This song makes me want to gag. James should've thought twice before including this song cause it just doesn't fit. The music, lyrics, and trade-off vocals between James and a female just get too cheesy.

Overall, it's not a horrible album. There are many positives, but I'm just not very impressed. This album was hyped in three different publications that I read. I will have to respectfully disagree. Visionaire is a talented one-man band and the talent shows, but it not used in the right ways in my opinion. But who am I?  (Review by Matt) 

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