ARTIST:

HAKEN

(UNITED KINGDOM)
TITLE:

VIRUS

(2020)
LABEL:

INSIDEOUT MUSIC

GENRE:

PROGRESSIVE METAL

TAGS:
Epic, High-pitched vocals
"In "Virus", Haken surely succeeds in its most intelligent and accomplished dosage between its recent djent and modern influences and the more nuanced influences of the early days."
DARIALYS (22.05.2020)  
3/5
(0) opinions from our readers (0) comment(s)

In the midst of the coronavirus outbreak, Haken releases his new album: "Virus". This is a strange twist of fate, all the more so when we know that this track had already been planned for two years by the band, as Charlie Griffiths, the band's guitarist, confided to us. Even more enticing, "Virus" is announced as the second part of "Vector", their album released two years earlier.

Its predecessor was certainly the heaviest album in the British discography, with immediate, catchy, shorter than usual tracks and with strong refrains ('The Good Doctor', 'A Cell Divides'...). By unveiling the very good first single of "Virus", 'Prosthetic', we could have bet that this new opus would follow in the footsteps of its elder, with a title rather focused on the djent and with very powerful guitar riffs, reminiscent of some sounds dear to Dream Theater.

Yet, this "Virus" appears much more diversified, conceptual and progressive than its first part, "Vector". Judging by the choice of the second single with the surprising title, 'Canary Yellow', which represents the other extreme of the sound of this new album since the title, all in restraint, is rather in an atmospheric lineage like 'Red Giant' on "Affinity", and appears under a less technical side where the accent is put on emotion and melody.

"Virus" is therefore a record that breathes, with a certain balance. The modern metal turn that has taken place lately can be found throughout the album, but this time, the way of proceeding is different. In this register, 'Invasion' finds its perfect place, but with a slower tempo than usual and a certain reserve, which makes it one of the most interesting tracks of the album. In the same genre, 'The Strain' offers very light verses carried by the soft voice of Ross Jennings and guitars that are relatively calm compared to what the band has offered us in recent years, and with, as often, a beautiful melodic chorus.

"Vector' had 'Veil', 'Virus' had 'Messiah Complex'. Although Haken has evolved stylistically from album to album, the constant is that we always find a so-called epic track in each new record. This one has two peculiarities however. For the first time, the track is subdivided into five different tracks, and above all, this track retraces the sextet's discography by taking up a large number of more or less obvious references from the band's old songs ('Host', 'The Puzzle Box', 'Crystallised, 'The Cockroach King', even 'Shapeshifter'). And as often, it can be unanimously described as the best track of the album.

The title starts with 'Ivory Tower', which in itself could have been a short, catchy single, along its 3'57 minutes, with simply excellent verses and chorus. It's from 'A Glutton For Punishment', the second part of the song, that it takes off in a different and peculiar way. We find there the super heavy sounds of "Vector" with a fast rhythm and very complex guitars for a purely enjoyable result. Here, Haken allows himself everything, dares, offers the most unbridled and crazy sections ever written, just like on the following sections, 'Marigold' and 'The Sect', which are also fantastic. Here, the technicality reaches new heights and winks to the band's old songs are legion. The fifth and last part, 'Ectobius Rex', is a real highlight with a finale featuring one of the most interesting melodies of 'Prosthetic'. 

Sixth album still very solid for the Londoners who confirm their status as leaders on the modern progressive metal scene, in a very interesting and more complete register than on 'Vector'. Haken surely succeeds in its most intelligent and accomplished dosage between its recent djent and modern influences and the more nuanced influences of the early days.


More informations on http://www.haken.fr/





TRACK LISTING:
01. Prosthetic - 5:58
02. Invasion - 6:42
03. Carousel - 10:29
04. The Strain - 5:23
05. Canary Yellow - 4:14
06. Messiah Complex i: Ivory Tower - 3:57
07. Messiah Complex ii: A Glutton for Punishment - 3:38
08. Messiah Complex iii: Marigold - 2:24
09. Messiah Complex iv: The Sect - 2:02
10. Messiah Complex v: Ectobius Rex - 4:57
11. Only Stars - 2:10

LINEUP:
Charles Griffiths : Guitares
Conner Green: Basse
Diego Tejeida : Claviers
Ray Hearne : Batterie
Richard Henshall: Guitares / Claviers
Ross Jennings : Chant
   
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LAST NEWS
HAKEN: Virus
LAST INTERVIEW
HAKEN (APRIL 2020)
One year after having met the English, we spoke again with the guitarist Charlie Griffiths on the occasion of the release of Haken's new album, "Virus".
 
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INSIDEOUT MUSIC / PROGRESSIVE METAL
 
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