Archetype - Dawning
Archetype. A word which carries a significant meaning with it. Synonyms for it could be ‘prototype’ or ‘original’. When you think about it, this can be hazardous for a band; critics could simply annihilate a band just for having this name. Then again, being a prototype or ‘the original’ says something about the ‘drive’ behind the band. Join me in an adventure where we will investigate both of these shadowy realms!
Archetype are a quartet from Ohio, USA and with ‘Dawning’ they bring us 13 progmetal songs, including 2 bonus tracks.
‘Final Day’ starts out with a great opening riff that immediately cuts the grass. Heaviness pours out of every drumbeat and string vibration. This basically is the case for most songs. The tasty guitarplay is mostly quite technical and does remind of somewhat more classical riffing. Sometimes fast, sometimes slow and most of the time quite melodic – some chords give a song that little ‘edge’ they need, like during the guitarsolo in ‘Premonitions’ – it never gets boring.
Drummer Keith Zeigler impressed me by working his kit the way he does. There’s a lot of variation in his rythms and those perfectly fit the guitarriffs. The drums are the engine of a band, some people say. Well, this engine runs perfect. But then again, there are other bands who offer us great drumwork.
Let’s move on to the ‘edge’ of Archetype. Vocalist Les Paul had the qualities which impressed me the most. A good, solid clean voice with raw edges is what the frontman of these progmetallers wields. His vocal style points in the directon of Warrel Dane (Nevermore) and Rob Halford (Judas Priest).
A good song to illustrate the examples given is ‘Arisen’. Starting out with loads of clean riffing, it gradually evolves into a fast-paced heavy song with a tight solo near the end.
As said earlier on this page, calling your band Archetype can be risky. In case of these Americans, I’d say they just balance on the edge.
Overall, I was very pleased with the results presented to me on this record, but the music lacks that really deep, innovative feel that most progfans are looking for (and find in a band like Pagan’s Mind). The band doesn’t use keys, for example. Although I compliment guitarist Chris Matyus on his attempts to replace the keys with clean guitar riffs, it’s still something that I think would fit Archetype very well.
But, as I said, there’s the little ‘Edge’. Les Paul really has an impressive voice which completely – I’m a Nevermore and Judas Priest fan – grabbed me from the beginning; very varied and a pleasure to listen to.
This ‘edge’ is what pulls Archetype back on solid ground and makes a purchase of ‘Dawning’ worth your while.
Chris Matyus: guitars
Jamie Still: bass
Keith Zeigler: drums
Les Paul: vocals
- Final Day
- Hands Of Time
- Dissension’s Wake
- Inside Your Dreams
- The Mind’s Eye
- Years Ago
- Visionary (1998 version)
- Hands Of Time (1998 version)