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18 of 18 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Prog rock for the new millenium
If Arena had been around in the 1970s they would have been up there with prog stalwarts such as Yes, ELP, and Genesis - the band they most obviously resemble. But instead of selling albums by the truckload, Arena have had to plough a narrow furrow in the less-adventurous new millenium where this type of music is distinctly unfashionable. Even so, Arena have managed to...
Published on 29 Sep 2000 by martin.hayes@ntlworld.com

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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
1.0 out of 5 stars Rubbish!
A pile of crap, nowhere as good as Contagion!
Published 1 month ago by Jackarmy1071


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18 of 18 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Prog rock for the new millenium, 29 Sep 2000
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This review is from: Immortal? (Audio CD)
If Arena had been around in the 1970s they would have been up there with prog stalwarts such as Yes, ELP, and Genesis - the band they most obviously resemble. But instead of selling albums by the truckload, Arena have had to plough a narrow furrow in the less-adventurous new millenium where this type of music is distinctly unfashionable. Even so, Arena have managed to be brave and stick to their 'prog rock' guns, while also looking forward, and on 'Immortal?' they have set down a marker for other bands to follow. Superbly produced by Arena mainman Clive Nolan and Simon Hanhart, 'Immortal?' oozes class in every one of its seven tracks. Cuts like 'Chosen' and 'The Butterfly Man' resonate with chugging rhythms, thunderous keyboards and a deep sense of foreboding in their ominous lyrics, while on quieter numbers such as 'Friday's Dream' and 'Waiting For The Flood' the group's musical virtuosity is well to the fore - the latter song even concludes with a mellotron - a la 'Strawberry Fields Forever.' And if no prog rock album would be complete without a full-length epic, the near-twenty minutes of 'Moviedrome'is a classic of the genre - complete with cascading drums, melodic pianos and superb themes that meld together without the joins showing. If your taste in music runs to Marillion, 1970s Genesis, or more comtemporay acts like Dream Theater, Spocks Beard and Transatlantic, then 'Immortal?' is well worth twelve pounds of your money. I've given it four out of five, because this new line-up of Arena can only get better still.
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16 of 16 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Sensational prog rock album from Britain's new Genesis, 5 Sep 2000
By 
J. Press "jimp" (Bedfordshire, UK) - See all my reviews
(REAL NAME)   
This review is from: Immortal? (Audio CD)
Arena get even better!. Unlike "Visitor" which featured relatively short songs, "Immortal" goes for much long epics of very high quality. Still drawing upon the likes of Genesis & Marillion with a touch of Floyd and Dream Theater with a hint of industrial!. 'Chosen' should appeal to those who like their prog rock heavy, whilst 'Butterfly Man' is a delicately woven epic tale worthy of Gabriel-era Genesis. Highly Recommended.
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34 of 35 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Stunning, 7 Oct 2000
By A Customer
This review is from: Immortal? (Audio CD)
I came across this band by a fortuitous album recommendation on Amazon and am very glad I did. After being amazed by what I heard on that ("The Visitor") I bought this without a second thought, and have been equally rewarded.
"Immortal?" shows the band maturing yet again from their past efforts (also worth checking out, by the way), producing a high quality and thoroughly enjoyable listening experience. There isn't a duff track on this album, and the production is superb. Prog rock fans should love this, especially if their tastes include Gabriel-era Genesis, Dream Theater, IQ or Marillion. However, that is not to say that this band are a pale imitation of any of the aforementioned bands, and there is also no doubting the high quality of their musicianship, in particular guitarist John Mitchell. Rather than trying to impress with widdly-diddly solos or shredding until the early hours, Mitchell concentrates on quality solos with real feeling, which are never to the detriment of the overall song. If anything, he has taken a less high-profile role here than on "The Visitor" (which contains some magnificent and moving guitar playing, especially on the title track).
For your money, you get 7 excellent tracks. "Chosen" kicks off in fine style, a solid slow-to-medium-pace rocker based around a descending power chord sequence. If you thought this was all the band were about, however, you're in for a surprise with the slow, acoustic-driven second track, the delightful "Waiting For The Flood", which shows they are equally at home on more mellow numbers. "The Butterfly Man" is a good representative example of the bands style, switching effortlessly between light and heavy textures, changing time signatures, and soaring guitars from Mitchell. This track probably wouldn't be too out of place on Genesis' "Lamb Lies Down...", though Arena have a more powerful sound when they rock. "Ghost In The Firewall" follows in a similar vein, the highlight of which is it's power-chord, doomy, slow chorus. No falling down on the next track either, the medium-paced "Climbing The Net", which sounds more like mid-70s Genesis (particularly the keyboard opening) than anything else on the album, and equally appealing. Just when you think the band must surely falter you are presented with "Moviedrome", quite possibly their finest song to date. (It's certainly their longest, clocking in at just under 20 minutes.) It's got just about everything you could possibly want from a prog rock band. Slow and fast sections, atmospheric interludes, guitar and keyboard solo highlights, not to mention excellent and highly listenable lyrics. The music changes quite frequently, and you really need to listen to the song in it's entirety to appreciate it fully. Boost the volume control to maximum around the 15 minute mark for three and a half minutes of stunning power rock, which is worth the price of the album alone. That this track does not close the album is something of a surprise, because it's a hard act to follow, but the band attempt it anyway in fine style with the slow and haunting "Friday's Dream".
Quality music throughout, from a band that just keeps getting better and better. Do whatever you can to hear this album, you're in for a real treat.
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars An incredibly strong album, 11 July 2006
This review is from: Immortal? (Audio CD)
This is an absolutely staggering piece of work without a single poor moment. Opening with the phenomenal swagger that is so common for Arena yet so rare elsewhere, the flint-hard guitar, sweeping keyboards and vocals that are finely balanced between musical and dramatic never fail to blow me away.

The moods change from hateful and vitriolic through whimsy, sorrow and fear across this album, closing with the epic 'Moviedrome' and the beautiful 'Friday's Dream'.

The band are clearly so very talented and the production is perfect. I cannot fault this album. It's one of my very favourite.
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5.0 out of 5 stars Wonderful Progressive Rock Music, 3 Aug 2014
This review is from: Immortal? (Audio CD)
I am almost embarrassingly late to Arena, Mystery, Pendragon, Knight Area, RPWL, Unitopia, Blackfield, Gazpacho, Riverside, Airbag. But better late than never, such a shame this music just doesn't get the exposure it deserves, you have to somehow stumble across it as I did with RPWL originally. This led to my knowledge of the other prog rock groups.
Having bought The Visitor then the Arena Live Tour 2011/2012 double album, I have just bought this wonderful album and Pepper's Ghost thanks to being able to listen to albums on either Spotify or YouTube thereby avoiding the 30% failure rate I was experiencing on earlier album purchases.
Wonderful vocals, guitar, drums and Clive Nolan's keyboards. Incredibly talented musicians, how lucky we all are that they chose the "unfashionable prog rock" style. Clive Nolan is I believe joint founder of Arena, has been in Pendragon for about 35 years, has written a musical, wow....I suspect most of us are very untalented in comparison?
I have an audiophile quality DAP (Colorfly C4 Pro) and a pair of AKG K702/65 headphones and this album sounds particularly good through this set up.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Mega Prog, 9 Oct 2011
This review is from: Immortal? (Audio CD)
If you can get past the slightly disturbing cover art (kind of a cross between the obese guy from 7even and the fat monk from Name Of The Rose), underneath lies a superb progressive rock album, probably one of Arena's best.

Style wise if you take the balladic, more melodic side of Dream Theater, mix with a little Alan Parsons and Pink Floyd then that is very much the Arena sound. Oodles of guitar solos, dramatic shimmering keyboards and hooks to get you tapping your feet etc. at the rhythm.

Certainly if you like any of the bands above, also Pendragon, Credo, The Reasoning etc. then Arena will go down very nicely.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Top Prog, 25 Nov 2010
This review is from: Immortal? (Audio CD)
The review has already said all of the good, sorry, excellent things about this album,so there's no point in expanding on them. The only two points I would like to make are, Moviedrome, one of the most superb pieces of progressive rock that you are likely to hear.The Cd cover is horrible,and what it's got to do with the music,I have no idea-did they? I saw Arena on their Contagion tour,and they are a very good live band,shame Rob's now left them. That's two front men gone then.What's the problem? I don't know,maybe John Mitchell does.Can anyone comment on that? Brief conclusion,British prog at it's best.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
1.0 out of 5 stars Rubbish!, 3 Oct 2014
Verified Purchase(What is this?)
This review is from: Immortal? (Audio CD)
A pile of crap, nowhere as good as Contagion!
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1 of 2 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars a good walk spoiled!!, 17 Feb 2009
By 
D. Weeks (sussex) - See all my reviews
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Verified Purchase(What is this?)
This review is from: Immortal? (Audio CD)
I bought this album on recomendation and on recently buying and enjoying John Mitchells guitar work on Frost and It Bites albums. Musicaly this album doesnt dissapoint. It has all the elements of both traditional and modern 'prog', some great melodic and rock guitar from JM, plenty of drama and intelligence.Yes, Genesis, Marillion and a bit of Dream Theater all seem to have influenced this album.Unfortunately I struggled to come to terms with the vocal style and un-inspiring vocal melodies. The over pronounced and exagerated diction, akin to a certain Mr Fish crossed with a 60's hippie type person with a beard and an 80's Euro Rocker, just doent do it for me. In fact i found it annoying to the point of distraction. Prime example is track 2 - lovely melodic acoustic guitar intro - i thought this was going to build into something good - until the vocals came in.
Why doesnt JM sing - he does a great job for It Bites.
Im sure a lot of people still like this style of singing but for me its a little too dated and contrived. Dont let this review stop you exploring Arena though because all said and done this is still a fine album by a very, very good band. Would have got full marks if not for the vocals.
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4 of 9 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars something of a unique genre, 6 Mar 2004
This review is from: Immortal? (Audio CD)
Have you heard the soundtrack to the movie "The Lost Boys"?. Did you love the song "Cry Little Sister"?. Did you like its style, a dark romantic melodic progressive rock style?. Want an album that has songs like it on?. If yes, buy this album. "Chosen", "Butterfly man" and parts of "Moviedrome" are just that style.
I heard an edited version of "Chosen" on a free cd that came with an edition of "Metal Hammer" once. I heard Butterfly man on Arena,s official site. And if i end up loving 2 songs from an artists album, guarantee i will buy it. This is a good album to own. The songs are quite long on this album, especially moviedrome, it lasts nearly 20 minits. Its kinda like a prog rock version of a story opera song.
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Immortal?
Immortal? by Arena (Audio CD - 2012)
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