• RiverGate - Enter The Gate (2013) (9/10)

    Genre: Progressive Metal
    Label: Self-production
    Playing time: 36:28
    Band homepage: -


    1. Enter The Gate
    2. Leaving As Blind
    3. Chains Of Memory
    4. Runway
    5. Talking To Raven
    6. Tears Of The Machine
    7. Runway (Acoustic Version)


    RiverGate - Enter The Gate

    RIVERGATE is a new Progressive Metal band from Algiers in Algeria that mixes mainly elements of Folk, Power and Symphonic Metal but also includes a few Extreme Metal riffs and vocals here and there. Their exotic, intellectual and melodic approach to music should please to fans of MYRATH and ORPHANED LAND and ZINDAN. The frequent use of dominant keyboard leads is what distinguishes this band and get them closer to bands like DREAM THEATER and SOUTHERN CROSS for example.

    Even though this first EP suffers from a mediocre production, this release is a true little jewel. The band has a perfect sense for addicting melodies thanks to a technically strong guitar and keyboard play and the melodic but powerful vocals. The inclusion of some Maghreb Folk elements or progressive instrumental sections gives these songs a truly liberating atmosphere and makes them feel quite diversified. The songs may have lengths around six minutes but they include no lengths and go straight to the heart.

    The band can convince in every track from the almost radio friendly potential hit single “Runaway” to the dark and raw but also quite modern “Talking To Raven” featuring guest guitarist Yossi Sassi of ORPHANED LAND fame. The mixture of Folk and Progressive Metal elements and modern radio rock passages has rarely sounded so organic and passionate.

    If you are intrigued by my review, give these five energizing songs plus a short instrumental opening and an acoustic version of one song a few fair spins. This is Algeria’s first Progressive Metal record as there are only a few Extreme Metal bands coming from that country until now. When the Tunisian band MYRATH released its first record in 2007, the situation was quite similar and the band has become rather famous all around the world. I’m sure that RIVERGATE could achieve the same kind of recognition if they continue to work as hard as they already did and I’m eager to hear more from them in the nearby future.

    (Online January 26, 2014)

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