Power of Metal.dk Review

The Beauty of our Youth
Style: Prog Rock
Release date: 27 September, 2013
Playing time: 48:48

The strength of material released in 2013 is continuing to astound me. From established bands to artists that are suddenly coming out of the woodwork, this year will be remembered as an incredible year. Case in point: the new album from Norway's Soup. Attracted as I was to the cover art and general tone of the album, I was excited after I heard "The Beauty of our Youth".

Soup have a certain amount of familiarity about them, but they still have their own sound. They remind me of a mix between Anathema and The Pineapple Thief, but that doesn't quite cover it, either. They feature climactic melodic progression similar to Anathema, but also a grounded rustic quality like that of The Pineapple Thief. Add to that a bit of Muse, a slight indie influence, and a talented violinist, and you will start to get a picture of how this album sounds. Melodious, soaring, upbeat, orchestral, and magical at times, Soup's third album leaves quite an impression both musically and lyrically.

I was immediately taken with the nostalgic ambiance throughout "The Beauty of our Youth". If it weren't already apparent by the title, I think nostalgia was the very point of this work. Youth really is like a dream. I can remember the "good old days", and somehow I forget all the bad times. This album is a tribute to those memories.

Soup has quite a way of incorporating these glorious feelings into their music through ascending melodies and even group singing. This is especially apparent on "Transient Days". Other favorite tracks include "Our Common Ground" with its excellent violin lines, and the wistful "Memoirs of an Imaginary Friend". Every song, however, is strong and provokes emotion, at least for those of us that want to reach out and remember better days. I'm really thankful for this glorious new release from Soup, and I really wish them the best for future endeavors into progressive music.

01. The Spirit Lodge (6:21)
02. Our Common Ground (4:14)
03. This Place is a Dream (3:43)
04. Transient Days (5:05)
05. Memoirs of an Imaginary Friend (6:41)
06. Loralyn (And the River Lady Within) (7:04)
07. Clandestine Eyes (8:14)
08. A Life Well Lived (7:32)
Label: Aspen/Viersieben Records
Distribution: Aspen/Viersieben Records
Artwork rating: 90/100
Reviewed by: Jason Spencer
Date: 13 November, 2013
Website: www.soupband.com