Special Providence – Essence of Change

Special Providence - Essence of Change

Celebrating its eleventh anniversary this year, Hungarian fusion metal quartet Special Providence is undoubtedly one of a few most cherished, consistent and enjoyed bands in the genre today. Just about every one of the band’s previous three albums has been utterly remarkable, as the group never ceases to blend simplicity with technicality, straightforward with complex. On its fourth opus, “Essence of Change,” the Hungarians once again exceed expectations with another thrilling, powerful and delightful ride full of intricate arrangements, colourful sound, and stunning songwriting. Following the success of their 2012 release “Soul Alert,” Special Providence expand their horizons by demonstrating how unique, confident, and focused the band is, regardless the keyboardist change.

In comparison to those of prior works, the title of this one is a bit non-transparent. Drummer Adam Marko said: “2014 was probably one of the most memorable years in the band’s life so far with all the mayor changes and new adventures within and around Special Providence. The band member change, working on the new material, recording the new album and signing to a new label, these changes just have taught and gave us a lot. We’ve learnt about each other, about relationships, about the life itself and above all to deal with the flow of change which always allowing us to be reborn time after time, to be creative, to take on and fight for new things, to change our beliefs and help us evolve. That’s why the upcoming album is called ESSENCE OF CHANGE.“ In addition, he says that “Essence of Change” is definitely the heaviest and the most progressive album they put out so far. The music itself is in agreement with that statement, showing that Special Providence built upon “Soul Alert” by multiplying its progressiveness.

Special Providence announce new album "Essence of Change" for March 30th

The album starts with “Awaiting,” a heavy hitter that from the beginning shows how far the band came from “Soul Alert,” with evident evolution in songwriting, arranging and production. Special Providence skilfully manipulate by crossing over progressive metal and fusion. All the jarring, complex barrages of precise musical mayhem are delivered with their usual sparkling efficiency in the following “Surprise Me,” which features an incredible solo by guitarist Marton Kertesz. After all, for pure playing prowess, Marton, new keyboardist Zsolt Kaltenecker, bassist Attila Fehervari, and drummer Adam Marko do not have many of mortal equals.

But this is not just a Herculean contest to try one’s technical proficiency in order to see how many notes or time changes can be delivered per second. Although instrumental music is eligible to such a statement, Special Providence demonstrate their ability to take that power and convert it into elegant, even stately song forms. One of many examples of that on the album is “Northern Lights,” the song that was available as a video months prior the album release.

Essence of Change” features enough intensely inviting melodies in shorter-form tunes to really give it a feel of a lucrative, not just artistic force of nature, resulting in numbers such “Atlas of You,” “I.R.P.,” and “Darkness.” The rugged musical landscapes on “Essence of Change” are naturally punctuated with gusts of wildly inventive solos courtesy of Kertesz and Kaltenecker. They generate their own weather system, duelling, erupting and hypnotizing before always bringing it back to some rewarding musical space, be it a lush jazz fusion-inspired meadow or some heavy-hitting metallic cauldron. Special Providence have never seemed more vital or ambitious, and without showing off, they prove what makes them the best at what they do.

As for the album’s longest piece, we are treated to the multicoloured “Gas Giants,” which features David Maxim Micic of Serbian metal band Destiny Potato providing astounding guitar solo. Jam-packed with a head-spinning mix of quiet interludes, face melting jams and, courtesy of Fehervari and Marko, forests full of rhythmic majesty, this suite summarises what “Essence of Change” is about. The album closes with a bonus track “Testing the Empathy,” recorded in 2013.

Essence of Change” pushes the envelope into some new musical dimension, a cosmic realm reserved for the best. Special Providence teach how an instrumental, progressive recording should sound in 2015. The band’s recent signing for UK label GEP is hopefully a good indicator for many great things to happen in the future. We’ll be there. Class dismissed.

“Essence of Change” is out on March 30 via GEP, pre-order album here.


1. Awaiting the Semicentennial Tidal Wave
2. Surprise Me
3. Kiss from a Glacier
4. Northern Lights
5. Atlas of You
6. I.R.P. (Interstellar robotic Pilgrim)
7. Darkness
8. Gas Giants

Bonus track:
9. Testing the Empathy (Single from 2013)


* Adam Markó – drums
* Attila Fehervári – bass
* Márton Kertész – guitar
* Zsolt Kaltenecker – keyboards

* David Maxim Micic – guest solo on “Gas Giant
* Zoltán Cséry – keyboards on “Testing The Empathy




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