Physical Release (CD) : December 15th 2021
Virtual Release (Spotify, Apple Music …) : February 15th 2022

1) Altitude For Energy


2) Louder Than Thunder
3) Invisible Battle Scars
4) Nothing Comes For Free
5) Dedicated to sir J./Rush Rush Rush

6) Falcon Eye


7) In Camera
8) This Is How We Roll
9) Improve, Enhance
10) Up There In The Sky
11) Rise Above
12) Long Way Home
Extra Tracks
13) Healer (2021 version) (CD exclusive)
14) Wings (2021 version) (CD exclusive)


Musicians :
Filip Lemmens - Vocals
Geert Fieuw - Guitars, Backing Vocals
Dominic Heynderickx - Bass
Eddy Scheire - Keyboards, Backing Vocals
Michel Lodder - Drums and loops

xxV

(pronounced : “Twenty-Five”) 


is Beyond The Labyrinth’s 5th album, celebrating the 25th anniversary of the band.
Recorded in plain Covid Crisis, all band members recorded their parts in their own home studio, except the drums that were also recorded at GPS (Geert’s Private Studio)

For the mixing and production, we chose to build a light, transparent mix, with the real rock drum sound as the base foundation, where all instruments have their own space and place without having to compete  with each other. Technically this meant staying away as much as possible from compressors, reverbs etc, allowing the dynamics and nuances of all instruments to shine through.
The end result is a clear, varied, easily accessible listening experience where one can hear all the subtleties, variations and different vocal styles and phrasings of lead singer Filip Lemmens. 


Compared to previous albums, the songs are shorter and more to the point. The whole album radiates a Classic Rock feel, but with a modern sound that still manages to refer to the roots from the 60’s, 70’ and 80’s.

Beyond The Labyrinth know their classics. But instead of covering them, they allow themselves to be inspired by them, thus reinventing and refreshing the genre : 

Classic Rock, redefined. 


“Fans First” 


Like the band’s approach to music, the strategy to be able to release the album was quite out of the box as well : To be able to finance the pressing, band leader Geert Fieuw privately reached out to all fans, bypassing usual “10% commission fee” platforms and personally vouching for the project. Fans heeded the call and were rewarded by receiving their album on CD before any press or promo was sent out. Selected stores and outlets in native Flanders, as well as the band’s own Bandcamp page, have the album available as early as December 15th 2021 but the band remains open to any licensing deal.
The virtual (digital) release (minus the exclusive CD bonus tracks) of “xxV” date is February 15th 2022


What people say :


Mario Pauwels - Ostrogoth :


“BTL is a lifetime journey with a wide range of musical influences, a tasteful stew with pop, rock and heavy rock flavours”

Steve Lynch - Autograph :


“Beyond The Labyrinth are one of the few bands that I listen to the whole songs… not once, but several times. I love the musicianship, writing, arrangement and melodies to all that they write.”

Kevin Goocher - Omen, Of Gods & Monsters :


Beyond The Labyrinth is a band that is easy on the ears. Their songs are full of melody and great pop sensibility, but don’t let that fool you. There’s plenty of power in their composition. The way they layer the instruments is genius and filled with textures and the vocals bring an uncompromised style that just puts their unified sound over the top of all that’s ordinary. One of my favourite bands for sure.

Dietrick Hardwick - Mindcage :


Hailing from Belgium, Beyond the Labyrinth is one of those rare and oft overlooked bands which have eluded the mass success they deserve. They are among good company, though, in the ranks of treasured cult favorites like Conception and Fates Warning. “xxV” may help them leave the shadows of obscurity - with this album they deliver a new classic to the world. Many fans will be in heaven exploring their body of work.


Jan de Greve - Concert Organizer (a.o. Wildfest) :


Honest Melodic Rock’n’Roll with a captivating story.

Gianni Riga - Booker and Organizer (DMC Group) :

“xxV” is a quality managed album that, given the necessary push and promo, is able to make big waves among fans of the genre.


The songs

Altitude For Energy


“Motivation, Dedication, Transformation”
Altitude For Energy is inspired by Aerobatic Specialist Stijn De Jaeghere ‘The Flying Nurse’.
To be able to pursue his dream to fly, he had to overcome quite some obstacles, including losing weight from 170 to 85 kg.(https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=_2vHJGBU57k)
The video clip to the song features exclusive footage from Stijn’s aerobatic shows and training !  


Louder Than Thunder


Filip’s favourite track on the album (due to its power), and one of Michel’s favourites too ! 

Check out the Dream Theather-meets-Maiden intro,  the neo-classic guitar solo and the nice mix of clean and more grainy “overdrive style” vocals.

On September 15th 2019 , Airplane buffs Geert Fieuw and (former keyboard player) Sjoerd Bruyneel attended the Sanicole Airshow, where they ran into Jozef "Joe" Vanden Broeck, Public Affairs Officer of Belgian Air Force Staff COMOPSAIR.
Talking about the band's influences and backgrounds, the recurring theme of "flying", both literally as metaphorically, came up and Joe suggested "why don't you write a song about an airshow". 

Little did he know that Geert had already been writing down keywords following a surprise low pass fly by by BAF's Stefan ‘Vador’ Darte with his Dark Falcon F16 and Geert's remark "wow, that was louder than thunder".  The lyrics to the song actually describe (a selection of) the airshow but can also be seen as a metaphor for a loud rock concert ;)

The amazing stereo samples were provided by fellow airplane buff Peter Baughan of HDVS Media (www.harrierdigital.co.uk) a professional cameraman that has released an extensive collection of airplane shows on DVD. Peter and Geert actually worked together as a camera crew on one of the last Wizzfest shows.

Peter provided us with (in order of appearance) sounds of :
(Intro)

Sea Vixen Jet flyby

Vulcan Bomber - likely one of the loudest jets ever ...

(Verse 1)
A Spitfire's Merlin      

The typical whistling sound of a P51 Mustang

A B17 rumbling by
(The Bridge and Outtro feature more sounds from these airplanes
The Cobra Manoeuvre is mimicked by Eddy on the keys


Invisible Battle Scars


A lot of people have them, the invisible scars from fighting, the trauma’s from the past. They change your behavior, but don’t change who you are… But sometimes, at night, you wake up when another memory resurfaces.
Dominic’s deep bass parts makes it sound even more eerie


Nothing Comes For Free


This what happens if your guitar player produces a 70’s sounding funk riff with added Wah-Wah en both drum player as bass player pick up the groove. The song chorus is typical BTL, but the verses radiate a vintage 70’s Shaft-like atmosphere.

Dedicated To Sir J./Rush Rush Rush


Favourite track of Eddy Scheire 

Hammond intro by Eddy Scheire - proving that he sure knows his classics and who his influences are.
In the past, BTL used to cover Highway Star with Filip proving that he could scream and sing like Ian Gillan, but with 80+ songs of our own, we decided not to play covers anymore but just to allow ourselves to be inspired by our influences….
Of course Geert used his Strat for this song… and Michel Lodder doing a single, spot on drum take with great references to the style of Ian Paice.

Falcon Eye


Is that an Abba-sounding intro ? With its 80’s feel this song even has some slight New Wave hints.
Lyrically, Falcon Eye is an observation from the vantage of point of the sniper, observing his ‘target’ from a distance. the “Loud and Clear” paradox indicates that our rifleman has in-ears, receiving instructions.
Filip’s cold, nearly harsh, vocal approach emphasizes the lyrics even more.

In Camera


A slightly Beatles intro, with a “Strawberry Fields”-ish mellotron sound transitions to a powerful sing-along chorus.
In Camera draws similarities between photography and real life : what do you wish to focus on, what you want to enlighten-or not-, the width of your depth of field and what point of view you choose.
Is it a conversation between mentor and pupil or between photographer and model that decide to keep things in private, not to be shown to anyone ?


This Is How We Roll


It doesn’t always have to be serious …A song about Rock And Roll adventures - Smuggling Jack Daniels onto the plane, building parties in Miami, Helsinki, L.A.. Filled with name drops and inside jokes, the ultimate joke may well be the use of the phrase “From Here To Tokyo” which is a literal translation of a Flemish expression meaning “something larger than life”


Improve, Enhance


A song with a message. Covid19 has made us wake up in a new world. Your choice : look around en wonder what happened or take the chance to change and improve things.
Geert and Eddy manage to pull off some Queen-style backing vocals.

Up There In The Sky


A techno beat escaped from the 80 opens yet another song about flying. An infectious ear wurm, a foot stomper … Check out the harpsichord at the end of the bridge - straight out of an Abba song -, the sub bass effects,  the Alan Parsons style drum roll loops and the dual synth/guitar solo that would fit nicely on any Saga album. Of course, it wouldn’t be the first time that BTL experiments with bleeps…

Rise Above



Sometimes it all just becomes too much, you need to Rise above and let Karma do her work. Once again bleeps, this time in combination with an acoustic guitar - still the song rocks !


Long Way Home



Most musicians know the feeling …. After the gig, loading in the gear .. 

Cold and tired and still a long way home.
You‘ve had enough, time to close….

Healer (2020)

Wings (2020) 


New recordings, exclusive for this CD, of the Beyond The Labyrinth classics because they were never released on CD, only on digital platforms.

Look into Michel’s hybrid drums - a mix of acoustic and an electronic loop drum hidden underneath “Healer’s” signature electric piano part !


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