Numph is a progressive metal band from Italy. The band was formed in 2010 and after some lineup changes it now consists of Marco Bartoli (Vocals), Giuseppe D’Aleo (Drums), Antonio Conti (Bass), Luca Giampietri (Guitar) and Alberto Vatteroni (Guitar).
In 2013, the band released “Theories Of Light”, their first full length album. Beyond the beautiful and intriguing artwork, it is also a more alternative and psychedelic approach to the progressive metal concept.
Listening to this album for the first time, I was mainly impressed by the carefully chosen guitar tone and how well it blends with the rest of the instruments as well as the exceptional vocals. The consistency of the sound in each song is simply amazing, a rather remarkable feat when taking into account the fact that there are plenty of ambient and calm parts that reveal the alternative and post-rock influences the band expresses in their compositions. (I could even imagine some of these parts fitting in a Lunatic Soul album as well!)
The album begins with the song “Theories Of Light”, which is a proof of the band’s, as mentioned before, diverse influences. It is a combination of calm and slightly psychedelic parts with heavier riffs and even growls. “Jacob’s Ladder” is a characteristic progressive metal song which revolves around a strong prog riff of the kind that exerts its magnificence through the many variations in which it becomes materialized; a rather powerful song. After that, the album transitions into its more ambient and psychedelic phase, that consists of “Dust Of Souls”, which features a beginning reminiscent of a Riverside song, “In Dark Limbo” and “Death And Rebirth”, host to an astonishing progression which meets its climax during the song’s end. The next two songs represent the constantly alternating dynamic of the album, shifting from an upbeat and heavier song, “Deep Impact”, to a still powerful yet somehow calmer one, “Within The Core”. This way, the listener is prepared for “An Angel”, the album’s soothing final piece.
In conclusion, this is an album defined by an ingenious manipulation of a variety of musical elements, whose combination surely keeps things interesting throughout its entirety. Definitely worth more than one listen.
Songs to check out: “Theories of Light”, “Jacob’s Ladder”, “Dust of Souls” and “Within the Core”.