Frontiers [Release date 21.01.22]
Edge Of Forever’s mainman, Alessandro Del Vecchio’s description of the band’s fifth album is worth reading. You get the gist, but its over the top, disconnected language gives the impression it’s an outtake from Spinal Tap.
He explains the album was written by him, while, ahem… “looking through the eyes of a Seminole warrior”.
That said, once you absorb several pinches of salt, Del Vecchio clearly found the Native American culture inspirational. The music, the songs, the production, the performances are all rather good.
He’s now got Aldo Lonobile, the superb Italian guitarist who heads up the EU’s Power Metal poster boys, Secret Sphere in his team, along with Hardline’s drummer, Marco DeSalvia. It’s the European variant of Hard Rock Superheroes Assemble.
Throughout the album, the constituent pieces are perfectly judged. Openers ‘Get On Your Feet’ and ‘On The Other Side Of Pain’ are tight, solid mixes of hard rock writing and performance, dismissing any initial doubts we may have had. It’s as if pieces of a musical jigsaw puzzle have suddenly come together to create a complete picture.
Though Lonobile’s axework continually plays a leading role, it doesn’t have the angularity and fierceness of his power metal moments, but it generates no less excitement. DV has written some exhilarating choruses here.
The balladic ‘Breath Of Life’ and the Harem Scarem like ‘Shift The Paradigm’ are instilled with the confidence of a writer/producer who knows how to write a pulse quickening hook. When the pace is dropping, when the melodies are thinning out, and it all begins to get a bit derivative, he finds another layer to pull them back onto their feet and back on course again.
That said, he’s saddled a few songs – like ‘Made It Through’ and ‘The End’s Starting To Begin’ – with an uneasy balance of sentiment and introspection, but the band’s sheer enthusiasm for their subject matter is contagious, and almost always carries the day. The latter track is the last section of a four part “suite” that climaxes the album. It’s an ambitious piece that works more often than it doesn’t. ***1/2
Review by Brian McGowan
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Power Plays w/c 16 May 2022 (Mon-Fri)
FLOYA The Hymn (Arising Empire)
VEXES The Dream Disease (indie)
NEAR DUSK The Way It Goes (Iron Head Records)
IN SEARCH OF SUN Make Me Crazy (indie)
WALLNER VAIN Deceive Her (indie)
FIGHT THE FADE Where You Go I Go (FiXT)
MARATON Non-Euclidean Heart (Indie Recordings)
Featured Albums w/c 16 May (Mon-Fri)
09:00-12:00 TERRA NOVA Ring That Bell (Lion Music)
12:00-13:00 FOZZY Boombox (Mascot)
14:00-16:00 MICHAEL McDERMOTT St.Paul’s Boulevard (Pauper Sky Records)
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