“The Circus of the Tattered and Torn”

By Dr. Abner Mality

It would be darn near impossible to beat this for progressive metal album of the year. Hailing from Brazil, a country well known for good prog metal, Daydream XI have come up with an enchanting musical journey through a very dark realm.

“The Circus of the Tattered and Torn” draws its main inspiration from the usual likes of Dream Theater, Symphony X and countrymen Angra, but it certainly doesn’t stop there. The music here ranges from mammoth abrasive heaviness like the opening of “A Cup of Agony” to the pure melodic AOR of “The Love That Never Was”. And it all fits together. Every song here is a piece of a big musical puzzle and a challenge to the listener to keep up with it. “The Collector of Souls” opens with black gospel  singing right out of Queen’s “Somebody to Love” before morphing into dark and heavy blues with bite. That song is an amazing change of pace.  The heaviness is definitely present on cuts like “Trust-Forged Knife” and “Open the Curtains”, but there’s plenty of room for melody. Hard to believe, but this album has music that runs from Bread to Meshuggah, from Symphony X to Kansas.

The playing ability of these gentlemen is without fault. There’s some incredible bass playing at the beginning of “Painted Smile” and  the shredding keyboard-guitar duels rival the best of Dream Theater. There are a couple of spots that are on the “sappy” side, but they are balanced with aggressive riffs. The three epic tunes here…”Overhauling Wounds”, “Forgettable” and the huge title track…all feature plenty of peaks and valleys, mixed with delicate, almost feminine vocals.

Don’t sleep on this band if you are a fan of diverse progressive heavy metal. Pick up “Ticket 000011” and visit “The Circus of the Tattered and Torn”.