Formed in the Netherlands in 2002 these perennially dynamic masters of sonic swiftly grabbed the world’s attention with their 2003 debut album, The Phantom Agony. By the time they released 2005’s grand evolutionary step, Consign to Oblivion, these Dutch sextet were widely regarded as the genre’s brightest hope. The decade that followed has seen Epica grown from plucky condenders to their current status as symphonic metal heavyweights. Each successive album is a creative progress while each touring delivers stage shows and performances of overwhelming power. Epica’s music showcased the compelling contrast between singer, Simone Simons’s soaring vocals and guitarist, Mark Jansen’s guttual growls; between Isaac Delahaye’s unstoppable core of scything riffs and keyboard, Coen Janssen’s intricate arrangements and embellishments. All of this backed by a powerful tandem: drumer Arien van Weesenbeek and bassist Rob van der Loo. The lyrics, too, made Epica stand out of the crowd, as they eschewed the tradititional trope of fantasy and began to explore and dissect notions of philosophy, science and spirituality. From the dark religious exploration of The Divine Conspiracy (2007), over the intense musical journey of Design Your Universe (2009), to an impassioned and political Requiem For The Indifferent (2012), and on to the brave curiosity and breathtaking depth of The Quantum Enigma (2014), Epica’s upward ascent is a testament to many years of hard work, determination and the relentless pursuit of musical dreams. Epic ‚Once Upon A Nightmare’ and 11-minute title track confirm that Epica’s eighth studio album, The Holographic Principle is also the band’s most musically extravagant and daring release so far.

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