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4 of 4 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Back on form!
Almost as good as Beyond Daylight. I think much heavier than the previous offering in Christ O... Andy Kuntz steals the limelight on vocals.. All the tracks are strong. Stephan Lill has found those heavy riffs again... Frequency, Holes in the sky, On my way to Jerusalem are for me the stand out tracks....For a tenner money well spent!
Published on 11 Jun. 2010 by P. Linden

versus
3.0 out of 5 stars Nothing new
I don't find this latest release any better than Christ O, slightly heavier but a similar sound. A couple of tracks stand out and a couple meander aimlessly and you lose concentration. Personally I still prefer Andy's solo 'rock opera' Abydos, it is more varied.
Published on 4 May 2011 by m


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4 of 4 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Back on form!, 11 Jun. 2010
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This review is from: SERAPHIC CLOCKWORK, THE (Audio CD)
Almost as good as Beyond Daylight. I think much heavier than the previous offering in Christ O... Andy Kuntz steals the limelight on vocals.. All the tracks are strong. Stephan Lill has found those heavy riffs again... Frequency, Holes in the sky, On my way to Jerusalem are for me the stand out tracks....For a tenner money well spent!
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Perfection, 10 Dec. 2010
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This review is from: SERAPHIC CLOCKWORK, THE (Audio CD)
Have been a Vanden Plas fun for years and all I can say they are getting better and better. Christ 0 was one of the best albums ever made in my opinion and this one is at the same level. Takes a short while to digets but then you just love it. As always incredibly rich full of ideas and drama. As always it took them few years to make a new cd but as always it was worth waiting for. Nothing for fast food music lovers though :-)
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Superb prog metal of the higest order, 24 April 2011
By 
Transcendence (Adelaide,South Australia) - See all my reviews
This review is from: Seraphic Clockwork (Audio CD)
From many quarters, Vanden Plas can be placed into the higher echelons of progressive metal alongside Dream Theater, Fates Warning, Redemption and Kamelot to name just a few. The band have been on a richly deserved hiatus over the past four years, busying themselves with musical theatre (producing their own musicals) in their native Germany, playing musical festivals around Europe and finding the time to put thoughts and ideas down for this album. `The Seraphic Clockwork' is a welcome return from the thought provoking and inspirational `Christ O' opus, which graced us in 2006. From listening to the `The Seraphic Clockwork' half a dozen times, I have concluded in years to come this will be heralded as a progressive metal masterpiece. Being an ardent fan of Vanden Plas' music, as well as having a sound knowledge of all their work, this is by far their most muture work to date.

From the complexity of the arrangements, lyrical content that wraps itself around an incredible concept story, lush keyboards and stunning guitar work that a prog metal connoisseur will lap this up in a heartbeat. Like a vast majority of Vanden Plas' work, the album is a concept story which revolves around their fascination for classical history. There aren't too many bands in this ilk able to pull a concept off with ease like Vander Plas, but over time, they have truly perfected the art of concept writing mainly to the wordsmith skills of vocalist, Andy Kuntz. The story is fictional, chronicling a journey in place and time from 16th century Rome to 33 Anno Domini. A rather elaborate concept as the subject matter does make for some fascinating reading if you open your mind and imagination to it.

I will not elaborate any further as one can see how comprehensive it is. What strikes me straight away with this album are Andy Kuntz's vocals. Kuntz possess one of the best voices in the progressive metal world with his vocals taking on a completely new meaning by singing with such heartfelt passion and emotion. This is the best I have ever heard Kuntz in many a year - just check out tracks like `Rush of Silence `The final Murder' comfirming his vocal prowess. As for the music, this is where things have also stepped up a few notches from previous albums. The complexity of the music is astounding and Stephan Lill's guitar work is mesmerising with an abundance of guitar solos interspersed on each track. Worth mentioning too, are the keyboards that have taken on more of role yet remaining in support of the rest of the instrumentation. I do admire Gunter Werno's playing style (similar to Dream Theater's, Jordan Rudess in many respects), as he incorporates many subtle nuances into the songs without overpowering the music. I am left with the feeling that each note played has a meaningful role to the music and there are absolutely no fillers on the album.

The interplay between Stephan Lill and Werno is totally spellbinding, especially on some of the longer passages. The rhythm section of Andreas Lill and Torsten Reichert (drums and bass respectively) have both done a sterling job, right up in the mix by offering plenty of variety to their playing. Since listening to `The Seraphic Clockwork' I have re-visited `Christ O' to compare the two albums. What is apparent is that `Christ O' is a straightforward prog album, which has a meaningful place in Vanden Plas' expansive discography. However, `The Seraphic Clockwork' has many introspective and reflective moments as the music seems to be able to move around more freely in the structure of each song by creating a rich atmosphere. This has certainly been well worth the four year wait - just hope the follow-up is not too long as Vanden Plas has made a career-defining album. This is one of the best progressive metal albums I have heard in a long time and if you are a fan of this genre, then you will be doing yourself a musical injustice by not purchasing a copy.
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5 of 6 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars The long-awaited return, 10 Jun. 2010
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This review is from: SERAPHIC CLOCKWORK, THE (Audio CD)
So Vanden Plas are back with this long-overdue album. It's been four years since Christ 0 and this album had originally been slated for release for last autumn - I can only assume that they've had problems with a distribution deal, as they're no longer with Inside Out.
Anyway, having listened to this a couple of times, now, it's very good indeed, but not quite up there with the last album (though this could change as these things have a habit of growing on one). It's great to hear that again, they've chosen to use choirs and authentic string sections, in places, particularly on what, for me, is the stand-out track "Quicksilver", which is very much in the vein of "Fireroses Dance".
I really enjoy VP's music, because it tends to have a very solid rock/metal foundation, plus some inventive interludes, good playing, but above all, a focus on melody. In fact, I think the lack of focus on melody is where Dream Theater fall down (IMO), because their chops are certainly up there, but it seems awfully soulless, an accusation you couldn't level at VP.
The final bonus track does nothing for me, personally and neither does the multimedia clip, but each to his own.

As for criticisms: I wish they'd release material more regularly. It's only going to get harder for them to retain a fan base, so they'd do well to keep fans interested. Also, Andy Kuntz's lyrics worked really well on Christ 0, but he's slipped into old habits and I'm sometimes left wondering what the hell he's on about.

Finally, I think it's fair to say that with lengthy compositions on this disc and the previous one, the days of the more easily accessible songs such as "Healing Tree" and "Scarlet Flower Fields" may be gone. But with such a wonderful melodic sound overall, do we care?

Nah!
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Beautiful, awesome in the true sense of the word., 5 Dec. 2011
This review is from: SERAPHIC CLOCKWORK, THE (Audio CD)
I find this album quite transcendent in its beauty and the whole emotional, imaginative concept. I can't stop thinking of it. On My Way To Jerusalem is just amazing and almost brings tears to my eyes. But the whole cd is just - awesome. Listen on headphones.
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5.0 out of 5 stars really good (says a newcomer), 28 Aug. 2010
This review is from: SERAPHIC CLOCKWORK, THE (Audio CD)
I am new to Vanden Plas but I knew them by name and decided to try them. I love Dream Theater and that kind of stuff. This is in the same league, said as a compliment. There are many DT clones and many fail miserably, but this band is great. The songs are really good, catchy, well built, and the guys can PLAY. The singer, Andy Kuntz, could even stand in for Jame LaBrie on occasion (honestly I think James is DT's weakest link ;-).
VDP is a very good band, I really enjoyed this album, and I will go see them live soon since they are on tour with this new album. I think I am going to get their back catalog. EXCELLENT!!!
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5.0 out of 5 stars I will die here forever, 26 Mar. 2011
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Amazon Customer (West Yorkshire, UK) - See all my reviews
This review is from: SERAPHIC CLOCKWORK, THE (Audio CD)
This album has definitely grown on me the more I've listened to it and it's one of those albums whereby your favourite song may well change several times with every new listen through. I think Rush Of Silence is probably the best song on there, but it's taken a fair few listens to get to that result and it definitely is an album you'll want to listen to a lot. I still think their previous album, Christ 0 is their best, but this is a close second. Theatrical, brilliant musical escapism. It makes a great running companion too, which is saying something considering how much I hate running!
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5.0 out of 5 stars Awsome album, 25 Feb. 2014
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This review is from: SERAPHIC CLOCKWORK, THE (Audio CD)
I can't tell you how good this album is without you listening it to yourself! because everyone opinion's vairy. but in my opinion this band is totally awesome and so is this album. i would recommend you to buy this, not mp3 but CD version because it doesn't give this album justice. just get the cd and listen to it in good sound quality and if you really want to you get the mp3 version the auto rip included.
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3.0 out of 5 stars Nothing new, 4 May 2011
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This review is from: SERAPHIC CLOCKWORK, THE (Audio CD)
I don't find this latest release any better than Christ O, slightly heavier but a similar sound. A couple of tracks stand out and a couple meander aimlessly and you lose concentration. Personally I still prefer Andy's solo 'rock opera' Abydos, it is more varied.
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5.0 out of 5 stars Brilliant prog metal......, 24 Jun. 2010
By 
Mr. I. D. Picken "Ian Picken" (London. England.) - See all my reviews
(REAL NAME)   
This review is from: SERAPHIC CLOCKWORK, THE (Audio CD)
Briilant prog metal. Top songs, top guitar and drum work, interesting lyrics. Go on treat yourself, you wont regret it.
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