"Architect of the mind" is the third album by Swedish power proggers
Hollow, following the release of last years "Modern cathedral" and their
self- titled debut mini cd, which was only released in limited quantity.
It was the self- titled mini cd that got them a deal at Nuclear Blast,
after great reviews in the Swedish and Japanese press. This four- piece
showed huge talent and promise of great things to come with their two
previous releases, but it`s with their new release "Architect of the
mind" that the band finally bloom.
The cd has 11 songs with running time of 48 minutes.
I have to say that I was absolutely blown away after hearing this cd a
few times. The cd absolutely oozes of energy, self-confidence and
greatness. Opening track "Transcending Sorrow" puts things in place from
the very first second with a great melody line, chorus and excellent
As you might have understood by now, the music emphasis on the powerful
twin guitar attack of Andreas Stoltz and Marcus Bigren, and not least
the superb vocals of Andreas Stoltz (guit/voc). This is a singer who can
sing in both mid and high- register with effortless ease, it`s a delight
for the ears. While the music is not overly progressive, there should be
enough technical finesses and progressive elements to entertain the
progressive metal fans. While we constantly are offered killer riffs
from song to song, the band also know
how to slow it down with acoustical parts and passages.
What strikes me this time around is the improvement in the songwriting
department. The melody lines are very melodic and accessible, without
being commercial or dull. There is no way to resist the extremely catchy
melodies presented on this album. All songs are worked though very well,
and each song is a winner. And as far as the production goes, I find it
good and better than on "Modern Cathedral", although the guitars are a
bit too loud and the drum- sound a bit flat.
While the music presented is not very original, I have to say that after
hearing all three Hollow albums, I think they have developed and found
their own style and direction. And when the songs and the overall
impression are of this high standard, I don`t care about originality. I
find this album to be one of the best power prog albums in a long time
and this is without doubt a must for all fans of the band and the genre.
A huge step in the right direction from "Modern Cathedral". I rate this
album to 4 ½ out of 5 points. Buy or die!