Genre: Progressive/Power Metal
Country: Sweden
Label: Napalm Records
Year: 2022

Its less than 18 months ago since the release of “Escape of the Phoenix” and yet Evergrey return with a new LP. You can blame the quarantine or the deal with a new record label for this quick return or both. Thankfully the band guarantees for something not improvised or spontaneous.

Since “Humns for the Broken» they have built a slightly different style. The riffs are heavier, as a result of which the songs sound more dynamic while more space is given to the solos as well. One thing of course that never changed is Englund’s emotional voice, which makes the final result sound 100% Evergrey. But also in the purely musical aspect they have built their own style. There is a progressive base but enough space is given to both heavy and power elements, as a result of which the compositions sound more diverse and adventurous. The keyboards color the compositions and do not steal the leading role from the guitars.

After 2014, they have been recording by following this pattern and the factor of surprise has been lost. Fortunately, their high quality has not. “A Heartless Portrait” is another very good album, which will give a bunch of more favorite songs to their fans. It is the logical sequel to “Escape of the Phoenix” and I find it slightly better in detail than its predecessor. It will satisfy their fans and it will also probably be a first-class opportunity for them to come back to our country. Always in their live concerts show a dynamism that makes their songs sound more impressive. Equally impressive as the artwork cover that Mortal Torment’s Giannis Nakos has created for “A Heartless Portrait (The Orphean Testament)”.