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4.00 | 24 ratings | 3 reviews
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Album · 2010

Filed under Progressive Metal


1. Forever and a Day (5:40)
2. Tempests of Sorrows (4:42)
3. Desert Call (7:00)
4. Madness (6:18)
5. Silent Cries (10:45)
6. Memories (4:53)
7. Ironic Destiny (5:44)
8. No Turning Back (5:38)
9. Empty World (7:06)
10. Shockwave (7:17)
11. Hard Times (8:02)

Total Time: 73:05


- Zaher Zorgati / lead vocals
- Malek ben Arbia / guitar
- Elyes Bouchoucha / keyboards & vocals
- Anis Jouini / bass
- Seif Ouhibi / drums

About this release

Release date: January 25th, 2010
Label: XIII Bis Records

Thanks to colt, adg211288, diamondblack for the updates


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Specialists/collaborators reviews

siLLy puPPy
A decent sophomore effort from this talented band from Tunisia. They succeed in not making a cookie cutter copy of their debut. I do think I prefer the debut slightly over this as the Middle Eastern fusion effects have been subdued here a bit as well as the prog metal having been revved up. At the same time, this sounds a little less derivative of Symphony X, so all in all it is pretty even for me.

Not all of the songs are as catchy on this one but the ones that are can be extremely addictive with “Shockwave” being at the top of the list. Something is lacking on this release for me to really love it like I do their follow-up to this, TALES OF THE SANDS. Overrall a very good second effort from this band showing the world that a great prog metal release from Africa is no flash in the pan. After hearing the next release it's obvious that they will push their sound even further and hone their musical sound into something even more interesting.
Conor Fynes
'Desert Call' - Myrath (7/10)

Barring Antarctica and the Lovecraftian horrors that live there, Africa is the least prolific continent when in comes to heavy metal and progressive music. To most, this will come as an established fact rather than speculation; despite a wealth of culture, modern strife has kept Africa back from letting its voice out. There are exceptions however, as Myrath proudly indicates. Hailing from Tunisia, Myrath plays a polished style of progressive metal, in the style of Dream Theater and Symphony X. What sets Myrath apart- and thus makes them worthy of mention- is that they use sound of traditional Arabic music and fuse it into the metal sound. Similar in this respect to the more established Orphaned Land, Myrath has an exciting and epic sound, and 'Desert Call' will appeal to anyone looking for a progressive metal curveball.

Although metal is a community which often prides itself on being progressively-thinking and open-minded, too much metal gives the sense of deja vu; that it's already been done before, and will be done again. Ironically, progressive metal is a central offender for this, as it sometimes feels every band calling themselves 'prog metal' these days is either a Dream Theater clone, or a melodic hard rock group looking for an added edge in their marketing. Myrath fits the glove with the sound of current progressive metal, but they are made memorable by their defining trait; that is, there is a strong sound of Middle-Eastern music running in tandem with metal. Much like the bands Kamelot or Nightwish merge their metal elements with Western classical music, Myrath does the same with their own culture, and the outcome is impressive. Myrath are a very capable prog-power band regardless of the Middle-Eastern sounds, but without this new angle, I would not have such a vivid memory of them.

Importantly, 'Desert Call' does not use these traditional Arabic sounds as a gimmick, but beefs them up so that they're an integral part of the music and sound. Malek Ben Arbia's guitar playing is firmly rooted in the school of John Petrucci and Michael Romeo, but Zaher Zorguatti's vocals are keen to switch between acrobatic power metal wails and a signature Islamic holler, often within the course of a single vocal line. Seif Ouhibi's drums find the balance as well, at times delivering the powerful metal pummel, but also occasionally conjuring a beat that sounds like it could score a cinematic chase through Baghdad. The songwriting's greatest strength is their near-seamless ability to work the Middle-Eastern sounds into the music, but the more power metal-oriented aspects can exert a certain level of cheese. Many of these songs have memorable melodies and song structures, but I often felt that by the end of most tracks, I had heard a run-through of the chorus one, or two too many times. Bring into focus a lackluster sense of flow and possibly overdone length, and 'Desert Call' begins to lose its status as the 'metal revelation' it could have been.

Myrath's signature style was born with their debut 'Hope', and it continues to run strong in the blood of 'Desert Call'. Although the current trends of progressive metal are starting to die out, Myrath's ambitious pledge to bring the sounds of their home culture to metal gives a refreshing new perspective on a style that has rarely managed to hold my attention in recent years. Its cheesy power metal theatrics aside, 'Desert Call' is worth an easy recommendation.
After Aspera, I was introduced to Myrath by the same friend. Progressive metal, astonishing musicians, very young of age, Symphony X - Dream Theater influenced, everything looks similar to Aspera (Norwegian progmetal young lads), but this time, they're Tunisian and the album has an Arabic twist inside, now this is interesting. "Desert Call" is the band's second release and since I never heard their debut before, my opinion is based solely on this album.

The opening, "Forever And A Day", honestly, didn't really impress me that much. I'm not saying the song's bad, but it's a decent attempt, you've heard them before only this time, the Arabic vibe is really thick and you can even hear a foreign singing in the beginning and when Zorguatti sang in English, he's capable of spicing up the style with the traditional Arabic flavor. "Tempests of Sorrow" still not helpful and didn't do much, I was about to lose interest until I decided to go on with the next title track, and looks like the big push is coming from this track.

"Madness", a dark tune that started with an assaulting riffs and took off high with a dreamy mystical flute in the mid part of the song before fading out with an epic combination of keyboard/guitar interlude.

"Silent Cries" is probably their greatest creation here, spanning over 10 minutes, this song exploded with an admirable riffs before ascending high to the gigantic chorus, although I must admit the over-vibrated singing can be annoying sometimes if you're not familiar with the style. Myrath smartly cooled the listeners down with an acoustical piece that ended the song flawlessly.

"Memories" flows like a calm water, a meditating ballad floated on top of soothing instrumental blend. The following "Ironic Destiny" and "No Turning Back" got a fierce rhythm and avenging riffs, packed with deadly keyboard/guitar solos and soaring vocals, laid upon a melodic textures.

Myrath is another surprise and "Desert Call" is better than I expected first. My favorite picks of the album is "Silent", "Ironic", and "No". If you like progressive metal embalmed with eastern folk oil, you'll embrace this easily. They've shown a great potential here and their next album is definitely worth waiting for.

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