"Chronicles of the Immortals – Netherworld (Path Two)" is the eighth full-length studio album by the German progressive metal band Vanden Plas, released through Frontiers Records, November 6th, 2015.
The second volume of Chronicles of the Immortals starts off pretty much where the first one ended, with the treacherous plans of the dark Godmaker threatening to emerge, in what becomes an enthralling sequel full of a fascinating collection of art forms, with which the band weave the story through.
Depending on the point of view, Vanden Plas still have plenty of progressive elements in their sound and the many changes in tempo, rhythm and mood are prevalent, yet at the same time they never let this get in the way of the actual song, there are no abrupt and abstract twists and turns to leave the listener dazed and confused, instead the quintet proves its prowess by making cohesive, dynamic, varied songs that make sense and do not need any noodling or mind-bending complexity, with every note having its distinct place to make up the bigger picture, not unlike the technique of pointillism in painting to achieve the grand effect in the end as a sum of each single piece (or dot), point made with “Vision 18teen * the Last Fight”, which unites progressive character with highly accessible atmosphere and makes the opposite work.
Once again Chronicles of the Immortals: Netherworld II might very well be an album that may catch fans of prog metal in general on the wrong foot, but Vanden Plas prove that in order to be truly progressive metal you do not have to inundate the listener with at times pointless technicality, but that just focusing on writing great songs can constitute exactly that. The Germans have never been about being flashy, but rather continue to concentrate on simply creating outstanding music. Highly recommended! --- metal-observer.com