SCORE - 90%
Italian power/progressive metal outfit Secret Sphere return with their 9th studio album since their debut in 1997. Quite a feat considering how many bands come and go in just half the time the band has been active. This album sees the return of vocalist Roberto Messina to the fold, whom fronted the band from 1997 – 2012.
To be honest, I’ve overlooked these guys apart from an occasional glance, but Lifeblood has got my attention.
To be spoken of in comparative terms to Dream Theater for their prowess, or Masterplan for their power gives you a decent indication of what’s happening here.
Production and mix are both flawless and give the energetic songs their best chance to shine.
Vocalist Roberto is a powerhouse without sign of a heavy accent, giving the band a true international flavour and at 10 tracks clocking in under 50 minutes in total, there are only room for 2 longer tracks here, the rest get to the point fairly quickly. That means you’ve got hooks and progressive noodling competing for time, which is a winning combo for fans of a great song.
Its fast and sometimes furious, the double kick drum gets a real beating, but with strong vocals and an emphasis on melody, Lifeblood makes a big play for one of the best metal albums of 2021.