Sound — 8
Symphony X is definitely one of my favorite Progressive Metal bands to date. This release, "The Odyssey", is much heavier than their previous ones. I feel most bands that start very technical, often lose some of that feel when they try to get heavier, but Symphony X still maintains the standards which have made them well known in the Progressive Music world. This may be a great album well worth the $15 or so, but I feel the earlier works are a bit better in a couple areas like drumming and uniqueness in songs. The drums are bit flimsy on this record, and a few of the songs sound very much alike, but still great. They have an excellent mix of members and styles as well. The guitar and keyboard provide a great neo-symphonic/classical feel. The singer has an excellent voice reminiscent of Ronnie James Dio, and the bassist shreds!
Lyrics — 10
The lyrics on this album are in the area typical of Prog Metal. This doesn't stop them from writing above the standards, though. "Forces they're oppressing me, Lords of mediocrity, an iron will shall break the still, some will rise and some will fall" Track 1, "Inferno". The usage of metaphors gives me goose bumps every time I hear them. I think there's no singer that has yet met the greatness lyrically of Russell Allen, since Ozzy.
Overall Impression — 10
This album, for me, overshadowed the "Train of Thought" Dream Theater release. Like I've stated earlier, some bands lose their feel when getting heavier, and I think Dream Theater has, and Symphony X hasn't. My favorite song on "Odyssey" is "The Accolade II", and to be honest, I don't really dislike anything about this album. If this CD was stolen, I'd be mad and go out to get another one, but at the same time I'd be happy that more people are finally taking interest in this great band!