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The Classical Conspiracy


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Album Review

One complaint that metal purists have had about some of Epica's more orchestral work is that at times, they have ended up sounding more classical than metal. But for those who value intrigue and adventure more than they value purity, the very fact that a metal band has had some honest-to-God interaction with the European classical world is fascinating — and The Classical Conspiracy documents the Dutch gothic metal band's June 14, 2008 appearance at the Miskolc International Opera Festival in Miskolc, Hungary. That gathering is hardly Ozzfest; it is a classical-oriented event that has been going on since 2001, and the performers are much more likely to pay tribute to Béla Bartók than to tackle anything that's metal-related. But as The Classical Conspiracy demonstrates, Epica take their classical music seriously. Disc one finds Epica (who are joined by a 40-piece orchestra and a 30-piece vocal choir) performing arrangements of a variety of familiar classical and film music, ranging from Giuseppe Verdi's "Dies Irae" and Antonio Vivaldi's "Presto," to John Williams' "The Imperial March" from Star Wars Episode V: The Empire Strikes Back. But if the metal factor is generally low on Disc one, that isn't the case on Disc two — which is dominated by Epica's own material. Although the Euro-classical influence is quite strong on Disc two, the main ingredient during that portion of the concert is gothic metal. But the classical lovers in the audience were no doubt well aware of the fact that lead vocalist Simone Simons is a classically trained mezzosoprano. If Disc one isn't metal enough for the metal purists and Disc two isn't classical enough for the classical purists, that doesn't make Epica's performances any less inspired or enriching. The Classical Conspiracy is a fine document of Epica's 2008 appearance at the Miskolc International Opera Festival.

Customer Reviews


This album is fantastic!
Most albums that are live make the music sound odd but honestly you can shut your eyes and imagine you are at this concert.
Totally worth the money!

what me think

Buy this and fill your ears with goodness


Genre: Metal

Years Active: '00s

Originally calling themselves Sahara Dust, Holland's Epica formed in early 2003 when After Forever guitarist Mark Jansen decided to break away from the group he had helped found in order to start an operatic metal project all his own. After drafting teenaged mezzo-soprano Simone Simons, guitarist Ad Sluijter, keyboardist Coen Jansen, bassist Yves Huts, and drummer Jeroen Simons, Epica entered Wolfsburg, Germany's Gate Studio with a classically trained choir and string section to lay down their ambitious...
Full Bio
The Classical Conspiracy, Epica
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  • $18.99
  • Genres: Rock, Music, Metal
  • Released: 19 May 2009

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