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5 out of 5 stars 4 customer reviews

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Amazon's Threshold Store

Frequently Bought Together

  • Hypothetical
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  • Subsurface (Special Edition)
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  • Critical Mass (Orange Vinyl) [VINYL]
Total price: £61.30
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Product details

  • Audio CD (20 Aug. 2001)
  • Number of Discs: 1
  • Label: INSIDE OUT
  • ASIN: B00005AWWA
  • Other Editions: Audio CD  |  Vinyl  |  MP3 Download
  • Average Customer Review: 5.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (4 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 361,990 in Music (See Top 100 in Music)

Track Listings

Disc: 1

  1. Light and Space
  2. Turn On Tune In
  3. The Ravages Of Time
  4. Sheltering Sky
  5. Oceanbound
  6. Long Way Home
  7. Keep My Head
  8. Narcissus

Product Description

THRESHOLD Hypothetical CD

Customer Reviews

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Top Customer Reviews

Format: Audio CD Verified Purchase
Although these guys are considered as prog metal, there's more metal than prog here. Perhaps a little unfashionable, and in today's market largely unsupported by the British media, Threshold struggle on regardless making great music. Too metal for prog-rockers, and too prog for metalists, Threshold find themselves in the middle, seemingly pleasing neither side, and yet I can't figure out why not.
This is their third album, released in 2001. The opening title "Light and Space" will test your speakers, and closing the album "Narcissus" is a slightly dark 11 minute opus leaving you reaching for the repeat button. Everything in between with the exception of "Keep My Head" would be a crowd pleaser at any head-banger's ball.
A little 80's in writing style perhaps, but most tracks are really well written, heavy and hook-laden, and thankfully with very few power ballads!
If you like fairly straightforward heavy rock, Threshold will please.
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Format: Audio CD
A real favourite in my collection. Loved it when I first got it and still do. It's a regular on the hi-fi along with Darwin's Radio....somehow they go together.

Lots of guitar, very intelligent lyrics sung by Mac...one of the best voices in rock, powerful drums and bass rhythms. Think Dream Theater with better songs and singer, think Rush with rockier riffs.

I can't fault it. "Turn on Tune In" and "Narcissus" are highlights of an album lacking lowlights.

The album is currently available with Critical Mass (another classic) in a double pack at a bargain price.......buy it, you know it makes sense.
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Format: Audio CD
Imagine Dream Theater jamming with Reo Speedwagon and it would sound something like this.Threshold have taken off where the first Dream Theater album finished.The band have given 'progressive metal' a deliciously commercial twist with glorious choruses on tracks like 'The ravages of time' and 'Sheltering sky'.I was surprised to discover that the band are British as they have the tight,sophisticated sound one associates with American bands of this genre.This is prog-metal without excess 'flab' and a mature grasp of melody.Forget Britain's answer to Dream Theater the band are much more than that.
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Format: Audio CD Verified Purchase
For me another new band found and purchased due to reading reviews on the Amazon site. This has I might been a great help the last few months whilst off sick, and trying to find new bands ( to me that is.)
Threshold, Hypothetical. .............Brilliant.
...............Buy it.
...............You'll love it too.
It does what it says in the reviews.
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Most Helpful Customer Reviews on Amazon.com (beta)

Amazon.com: HASH(0x914d3570) out of 5 stars 28 reviews
7 of 8 people found the following review helpful
HASH(0x9213fc30) out of 5 stars Balance and an expressive vocal performance 19 Jan. 2005
By Michael P. Havens - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Audio CD
Threshold's 'Hypothetical' is from the start a great compositional CD. Each song is well crafted, the love of writing good melodic and harmonic (How about those lush, layered, harmonius vocals?) shining through each piece. Some will fault this reviewer for being "out to lunch", but in comparison, Mac's performances on these songs are in some ways reminescent of Steve Walsh's voacal contributions with Kansas. What I'm trying to say is that, in a world where R&B "divas" and hip looking, long-haired, throaty, three-octave Vagnerians, who have talent, but abuse it, Mac's abilities, though no doubt competent and able to produce this kind of vocal gymnastics, goes in another direction, that, in giving a song power by the drama of the piece and through the words and knowing not to go too far. Sometimes simple, subtle songs like 'Sheltering Sky', or the power of God speaking down upon humanity 'Light and Space', or even the disturbing, slipping grip of reality in 'Turn on Tune In', there is a story to be told, and in using another Kansas comparison, 'Song for America' (Kansas: 'Song for America'), tells it with beauty, grace, power, and sensitivity. Progressive-Metal doesn't have to be trite, it can reach an emotional chord, and Threshold does it in spades.

And even more impressive than the guitar work of Karl Groom and Nick Midson are Richard West's keyboards, who also displays a older school of Progressive music. Also, kudos to Johanne James on drums for not abusing the oft heard, tired cliches of the "quad" (Double bass/Snare/etc.) "dugga-dugga-dugga-dugga" that's been creeping up on a lot of material lately in so many songs. There is sensibility and variety in his drumming. More drummers need to explore more of their instrument. No worries about burn out of old, and again, trite, techniques on this CD.

And lastly, my arena, lyrics. And boy, these people are poets. There is something lyrical in their lyrics (if you happen to be a fellow writer, you understand my point). Here's two examples of what this band is capable of when creating a complete work of art:

1.(From 'Light and Space'):

I am the storm that won't be calmed

I am the calm that follows

I'm the stars that fill your day...

2. (From 'Narcissus'):

I want nothing of your snarling mongrel strain

Your smarmy doggrel lies

And if these words have singed your fur

Consider yourself a whipped cur

The images paint a picture hard to shake off, while the music, doing the job it's supposed to do when setting to words, keeps the dramatic and emotional tension and landscape from start to finish. The listener in fact, will travel eight different landscapes, from meloncholy, to powerful awe, to wire taut conflics, with an energy that's hard to come by in a market often overshadowed by the next big copy of a copy of a copy.

Good job to these bright English fellows. And good luck to them in the future, in not creating mere entertaining ear candy, but viable art.
3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
HASH(0x917be30c) out of 5 stars Narcissus alone deserves 5 stars 8 Mar. 2008
By Justin G. - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Audio CD
2001's Hypothetical might have been album #5 from British progressive metallers Threshold, but I still see it as the first album where the "real" Threshold sound is in place. A lot of that has to do with the presence of vocalist Andrew "Mac" McDermott. This is his second album with the band, and he not only seems more comfortable with his role, he uses his voice as just an effective an instrument as Richard West's keyboards. The song Keep My Head is a great example of this, but he really shines on the entire album.

Musically, Hypothetical isn't that far removed from previous Threshold albums. The band's keyboard heavy, Dream Theater influenced progressive metal style is intact here; it's just more refined. The songwriting in particular took a big step forward with this album. Listening to this album after Wounded Land makes you seriously question whether this is the same band. The band just managed to find the perfect mix of lush instrumental work, captivating melodies, and compelling vocals that put them in the top tier of modern progressive metal bands.

Seven years after its original release date, Hypothetical remains my favorite Threshold album. The band just seemed to get everything right with this one. I can't see how any fan of Dream Theater, Vanden Plas, Symphony X, or any other modern prog metal band could come away from this album unimpressed. The song "Narcissus" alone should be enough to convert just about any unbeliever!

Edition Notes: There is also a Limited Edition of Hypothetical that comes in a neat digipack and features a bonus track. The bonus track is an acoustic version of the song "Life Flow," which was originally on the Extinct Instinct album. It's a nice addition, especially since it lets us hear an older Threshold song with Mac singing. The Hypothetical Limited Edition is a bit harder to find than most other Threshold Limited Editions, but is well worth the search.
5 of 6 people found the following review helpful
HASH(0x918295d0) out of 5 stars Love At First Listen 6 Mar. 2005
By metalgoddess - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Audio CD
I was in a record store one day when this album caught my eye. At that time, I had never even heard of Threshold; but, knowing that the store that I was parousing was quite lenient about returns should I decide to return something I didn't like, I bought 'Hypothetical' on a whim.
I took the album home, threw it in my CD player- and there it stayed for the next several months until I literally wore the poor thing out from too much play; wherein, I had to buy a second copy!
I hate to play the "better than Dream Theater card", because it seems that they are the progressive band that everyone gets compared to; but, when you're as melodically progressive as Threshold, that kind of has to go without saying.
Heavy bass lines and smooth, ambient keyboard work, similar to that of Kevin Moore's, opens the first track entitled 'Light And Space.' From there the album evolves into a powerful, haunting trance of progressive heavy metal. From the opening of the album, to 'Narcissus' (based on the myth of Echo and Narcissus), these guys remain true to unabashed, powerful, inspired and progressive heavy metal.
I believe someone mentioned that threshold focus as much on the lyrical side of the music as much as the composition of the music; I couldn't agree more. A lot of prog bands do tend to focus on the music and leave the lyrics to fall by the wayside. (ahem, Spiral Architect). This does not apply to threshold.
Lyrics such as, "you gave me sheltering sky but I reached for the stars, I said I don't believe in who you are, but it's only words" is so moving to me.
Needless to say, I now own every album Threshold has ever put out. While this band is unable to put out a less than amazing album, this is still one of my favorites by them- and one of my favorite albums, hands down. If you enjoy Dream Theater, you will LOVE Threshold!!!!
2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
By Mr. Stuart Lambert - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Audio CD
This is simply one of the finest prog metal album around - and I don't say that lightly. Yes, Dream Theater and Shadow Gallery may have more technical ability, but for sheer audio enjoyment this squares up to them and holds its own. Light and Space is the song Threshold have long promised but never quite delivered, a masterfully blended meld of heavy riffs, abruptly changing time signatures, searing lead and soaring vocals. That they admit it was hard to record is proof of its brilliance. Turn On Tune In is very 'Latent Gene'-like, but my favourite has to be Sheltering Sky, with its wonderfully simple yet effective chorus lines. But this now - there's even a brilliantly amusing riff (the intro to Long Way Home) that is just SO old school Megtadeth!!!!!! Great stuff!!!!!!!!! This is simply a superb, intelligent, modern masterpiece that deserves more publicity.
4 of 5 people found the following review helpful
HASH(0x9276af9c) out of 5 stars A curious amalgam that works 13 Dec. 2001
By Martin Hurst - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Audio CD
I'm being mean by not awarding this CD five stars but I really hate issuing five star reviews in case something better comes along!
This is an astonishingly good CD that is very difficult to pigeonhole. Band influences aside this is a mixture of power metal, prog and AOR!! The main catalyst to this is vocalist, Mac, who you could quite imagine pairing up with the likes of Journey or REO Speedwagon. This recipe could so easily have backfired but the song constructions, links and musicianship are so strong that it really works extremely well.
As a benchmark, the music feels close to Everygrey (but less morose), Enchant (but better production) and Queensryche (but less pretentious).
Overall a very pleasing new discovery for me and one where I will quickly invest in the back catalogue.
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