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Heaven's Cry – Outcast album review

Heaven's Cry deliver a prog-metal workout for the ears and the brain

Heaven’s Cry are a progressive metal band with a social conscience. That description might make them sound stuffy, but despite a tendency to write about weighty issues the Canadians respect the bottom line; it’s about entertainment.

The songs featured on this, their fourth album, stand up in their own right, whether or not the listener sympathises with the message behind opener The Human Factor, which samples a speech from philosopher and activist Noam Chomsky, or the juddering If I Only Knew.

Having a brain never did Neil Peart, lyricist and drummer of Rush, any harm, and though it’s unfair to use Heaven’s Cry’s illustrious countrymen as a reference point, the principle remains the same. If Armageddon is on its way, as the quartet seems to fear, we may as well enjoy some bloody good rock music. The album’s title track rams home their musicianship in a flurry of notes; ditto the 14-minute, multi-part epic The Day The System Failed, but HC rarely lose sight of the fact that that a song should lurk beneath the bombast.