EPICA’s The Holographic Principle (2016): Easy-to-the-ear melodies and progressive arrangements wrapped in a florescent veil

Here I’m sitting, sipping on a cup of coffee and listening to a band I know basically nothing about: EPICA. The Dutch symphonic metal band around mastermind Mark Jansen, fronted by the charismatic Simone Simons, has released their seventh full-length studio album, The Holographic Principle, on September 30, 2016, through Nuclear Blast and I seriously love it – a lot! I can honestly say that every moment on this 72-minute masterpiece are essential to the journey EPICA takes their listeners.

The album consists of beautifully crafted symphonic metal songs with an epic character to them. There is a perfect balance between easy-to-the-ear melodies combined with progressive metal arrangements, all wrapped in a florescent veil of dynamics. Furthermore, bringing in a ‘real’ orchestra instead of playing those parts on a synthesiser adds to the organic character of the album. Shame on me for already having created my Top 20 heavy metal albums of 2016 and completely missing this one. Again, in my humble opinion, EPICA’s The Holographic Principle is one of the best metal albums of 2016.

What others wrote about EPICA’s The Holographic Principle:

“Epica has truly crafted another masterful and brilliant work of symphonic metal in The Holographic Principle. I think anyone who has ever liked a little bit of symphonic music, or the score from a movie or video game would fall completely in love with this album and Epica.” – SOL, metalinjection.net

“Vibrant vocals, excellent musicianship, maximum effort and a near perfect balance between orchestral majesty and metal swagger make Epica’s The Holographic Principle a winner!” – Joe Mis, hardrockhaven.net

“I was entertained and satisfied after each listen to The Holographic Principle, content that I hadn’t wasted my time, but found myself wishing that I was further enthralled by the whole affair.” – Diabolus in Muzaka, angrymetalguy.com

“Heavy, delicate, and triumphant, Epica have once again created their trademark sound with ‘The Holographic Principle’, but with a historical battleground film score feel. Even though its biggest flaw is its overproduced sound, Epica brings so much more to the table with their ability to incorporate influences from other genres.” – Sandra Yeomans, metalwani.com

“Overall, for the people who are into this sort of massive powerful super-music, I think you’ll likely be very happy with the album, and I would be doing the band a disservice if I awarded this anything lower than a 9/10, because the construction of every song is incredible.” – Amy W, musicalypse.net

Sebastiano Mereu

YouTuber + host of the #FHTZ online music show with co-producer @simonkurt + marketing & digital content producer + university lecturer