Factory of Dreams - Strange Utopia

Hugo Flores haven’t lost a lot of time and brought us the second record from their latest project Factory of Dreams a mere year following the release of their debut “Poles”, however it was only now that this lazy-ass scribe found the time to write some words about it.
Initial listens reveal that “Strange Utopia” is not a radical departure from their first work and stays within the confines of symphonic and gothic metal for most of its duration. Nothing new then as Factory of Dreams music still bears some resemblances with names like Ayreon, Stream of Passion and Elis, blending symphonic and melodic gothic-metal with progressive elements and giving emphasis to the gentle voice of Swedish singer Jessica Lehto.
Perhaps this new record sees them dipping a toe in Celtic music every once in a while, which isn’t necessarily a bad thing. At least leadoff track “Voyage to Utopia” and “The Road Around Saturn” have both a Celtic feel and play like a soundtrack to an epic and fantasy movie, and there’s also a classical solo finely executed on Spanish guitar on the song “Destructible Destruction”.
The songs on “Strange Utopia” are finely crafted, complex yet without being overly show-off and laden with impressive arrangements and beautiful melodies, this is definitely the finest expression of Hugo’s talent as songwriter and performer to date.
However, despite the strength of the arrangements and harmonies, I guess not everyone will endure throughout its hour-plus duration as it seems way too exhausting for casual listeners that place other styles of music as their favourite.
Nonetheless fans the acts mentioned above won’t certainly get tired of “Strange Utopia”.

David Alexandre

Band info: strangeutopia.com
Label info: www.progrockrecords.com