Have you ever heard of "Docker' s Guild"? No? Well, a week before I didn't either.
"Docker's Guild" is a progressive metal space opera which will unfold through five "seasons" and nine albums and is created by Douglas R. Docker
The project introduces the listener to the world of "The Mystic Technocracy",
where a silicon-based techno-organic alien race attempts to wipe out all life on Earth through organized religion, while a tormented scientist makes it his mission in life to save humanity. His quest will take him across the universe and on a personal journey from which there is no return.
The first album called “The Mystic Technocracy - Season I: The Age of Ignorance” was released in 2012.
I'd like to introduce you to the new album titled " The Heisenberg Diaries - Book A: Sounds of Future Past", The story takes place between the five main "seasons". It focuses especially on the youth and love to science fiction of the main character called Dr. Jack Heisenberg. This is also the reason why this album features exclusively science fiction soundtracks reworked with elements of metal.
Yes, you heard that right! If you ever wanted to know how it sounds when science fiction soundtrack meets progressive metal, you've come to the right place.
The album consists of 14 songs and a playing time of roughly an hour.
Next to the mastermind Douglas R. Docker many famous musicians worked together to create this album like Amanda Sommerville (Epica, Avantasia, Trillium), Elize Ryd (Amaranthe), Nita Strauss (Alice Cooper) and Anna Portalupi (Tarja Turunen, Hardline) just to name a few.
The most famous included songs are probably "Flash Gordon Suite", a fifteen minutes long medley of different songs from the "Flash Gordon" movie from the eighties, "The Neverending Story" featuring Elize Ryd and the "Doctor Who Main Theme".
While most songs have brisk pace, synthesizer and sometimes sound aside from the drums and guitars like pop music, there are also a few calmer songs which features only an orchestra like "The White Light /Echoes From The Past /Dying Station /Delenn's Sunrise" from Babylon 5's final episode "Sleeping in Light". This creates a nice and welcoming difference, making them stand out.
I'm really biased about the album. The concept of the whole project is very interesting, but looking only at this single album I fail to like it. Don't get me wrong. It is pretty well done. The songs are nicely arranged, and the added elements of metal gives them a refreshing sound.
So what's my problem with it?
It is exactly what other people might praise as a bold and interesting move:
Like I wrote above this album consists entirely of classical science fictions songs. This totally fits the theme and story of the album, but it also means there isn't a single new song on it.
This is a very double-edged sword, because if you didn't like the original songs, you probably also won't like them on this album.
I normally like listening to soundtracks, but there are some themes, especially "Flash Gordon Suite" that have these extreme 80s sound (The movie is from the 80s, so no wonder). I heard this song before and never liked it. This also applies to this version. Frankly, there couldn't be enough metal in the world for me to make it bearable.
The extreme opposite is "Neverending Story". The irony is that it's also from the 80s but I always liked it. So hearing it there made me feel really nostalgic.
This also the reason why I would like to recommend this album to science fiction fans! Docker’s Guild remains true to the original themes while adding elements of progressive metal, giving them a refreshing new sound in the process.
Fans of the originals songs and the movies will be very happy with this album. Everyone else should listen to it before buying.