Ark - _Burn the Sun_
(FaceFront, 2001)
by: Chris Flaaten (9 out of 10)
Less than two years after their amazing debut, Ark are back with a new album and a larger line-up. Starting as a side project for Tore Ostby and John Macaluso, they decided to "go for it" and recruited the vocal talents of Jorn Lande and released their self-titled debut. Among others, Yngvie Malmsteen was greatly impressed by this album and actually borrowed the entire group (and a riff or two) on his previous album. This time around they created the songs more as a band, and wrote them while actually having a vocalist around. The result is a more "complete" album with more flow in the songs, but perhaps with less progressive and technical elements than their debut. Still, the album is challenging in most senses of the word and about as varied as a rock/progressive/metal album can get. Ark manages to create accessible music that's truly interesting and original at the same time. If you can appreciate more prog-oriented music, this album is about as good as it gets.

(article published 12/8/2001)

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