The idea of a Metal band having a cellist is odd enough but when you add two more you are left with the wondrous creation that is the group Apocalyptica. This band clearly have taken traditional barriers and shattered the accepted with something completely out of left field. Mixing classical instruments with heavy music is not something that has never been done before (see the Metallica S&M as well as KISS Symphony releases for examples of that). Now while those were appealing in their own unique ways, the Apocalyptica music is new creations entirely. As I listened to this skillful blending of classical instrumentation along with rock solid riffing I was wondering if I was listening to Metal at all. Instead I wondered if perhaps a new breed of Progressive Music was upon us. At fear I would leave something out, I decided to settle on this being a little bit of both. In any case it is a welcome addition to the fold. With Progressive music there are often many classical inferences, what better way to showcase them than with actually classically trained musicians who also are lovers of Metal and things heavy.
The three main figures in Apocalyptica are Eicca Toppinen, Paavo Lotjonen, and Perttu Kivilaakso who all are very adept at the cello and as you listen you find yourself quickly swept up into a unique array of musical colors as you listen to the piece. In addition to the studio musicians who encompass the rest of the recorded piece, Dave Lombardo (most noted for his work in Slayer) appears on a number of tracks as drummer and percussionist.
I enjoyed most of this CD, and had so many interesting takes as Listened. The song “Faraway” had an almost movie soundtrack feel to it. It was a warm and sincere piece, while “Prologue Apprehension” which starts the CD kicks you into a decent gear. In “Somewhere Around Nothing” there are some technical chops that one only generally would find in stuff like Dream Theater or Yes. It is a recommended piece for those who choose to experiment a little more often than others, or for those seeking a different level of musical satisfaction. There are 18 tracks on the CD, a large number of bonus tracks and a video. It is certainly a good amount of value for the money. Of all the tracks, there is two vocal songs, and one is sung by Nina Hagen.