If anyone went to Ozzfest this year, you may have heard this foursome on one of the stages. From the minute they released their single, and were announced on the bill of a major concert here, I knew I had to hear more of them. I loved their set, and continue to listen to their CD on a regular basis. I call them hard rock, but they are so much more than that...
Nothing Sacred (4:24)
Hard track for the opener. Main riff is just heavy bass with drums, interspersed with guitar flourishes. Mini breakdown shortly after 2 minute mark..guitar solo that goes from 3:37 to the end of the song, very cool to hear.
More upbeat than Nothing Sacred, bass has main line, with some nice slide work being done, with acoustic guitar supporting it in the background. Justin's vocals are exceptionally powerful here, because he projects without having to blow his lungs out. Guitar solo here isn't as long as before, but it's catchy.
One of the ballad-like songs on here, is centered around some acoustic guitar and strings...distorted guitar kicks in for chorus, but it's not really heavy...'nother verse, chorus, some sort of bridge thing...distorted guitar solo about 3:04 or so, with strings in the background, few faster snare fills in there as well...solo ends after about 30-40 seconds...main part of song finishes it out
Intro riffs are heavy, but not dark. Main riff is bass, with guitar swells and whatnot in background, coupled with some distorted vocals make it very haunting sounding. Chorus vocals are once again powerful from Justin, with a decent amount of crunch behind it in the guitars. Guitar solo from 2:40 - 3:31 is actually two separate solos, both of which are quite passionate.
Interesting intro to this...kind of a spacey feel to it? Verse riff is quite heavy, and the drumming picks up considerably here. Chorus riff is much brighter, reminds me of Saviour a bit. Solo at 2:41 sounds like what I think is a shred solo with alot of wah behind it...it's a little less than 20 seconds long, followed by a slowdown with some piano. Picks up, then slows down at the end.
Arguably one of their hardest tracks, but you wouldn't know from the interesting bend intro, which plays into the main riff. Bass and drums are slow, Justin's vocals are slow and melodic, giving a dark feel to it. Chorus comes in...very hard riff here, combined with pseudo violent vocals make it headbangable...guitar solo at 3:08, another shred solo? If it's not shred, it's **** fast at times. Chorus a few times ends it.
Shortest track on here is a beautiful piano solo by Justin. Not much to say about it, except I liked it alot..and it plays into the next song very nicely. This puts Evanescence to shame, methinks
Second longest track is an interesting one. Starts out with some (synth?) strings in the back, a bass riff, and piano. Justin sings very softly on this one, it's a relaxed feel, at least at first. Drums and some guitar enter at 1:28...but the piano keeps the melody. Bout 1:57, distorted guitar comes in for a few seconds, but goes right back to the intro/main slow section. There is a "C" section, with a guitar solo at 3:35 or so..it's not terribly fast or hard, but is full of emotion. Justin gets a female duet on vocals at about 4 mins. or so..I dunno who she is...strings get alot more prominant here, keeping up a nice melody till about 5:36 where we return to the main riff for the end.
Justin sounds a bit deranged in the intro here, guitar is a heavy crunchy riff, this one reminds me of Nothing Sacred and Below a bit...this one may actually be slightly harder now that I think about it. Chorus style is similar to Below a bit, but much faster. Weird vocal doublings behind Justin...guitar solo at 1:45...a "C" section for this piece as well actually...with a breakdown-like riff at 2:04...chorus section or three ends this one...
Has some mildly heavy guitar parts mixed in with melodic vocals. This isn't as heavy as Below, or Coming, but it's not slow. There seems to be a constant, or maybe even walking bassline underneath it...guitar solo at 2:09...seems like there might be some wah, but not as much, thrown under it. Drumming gets faster as solo ends...we get a slower interlude-like section, before another chorus or two and an outro
Figure 8 (12:48)
No, you read that right. Their last track is an epic nearly-13-minutes-long. And what a track. I'm torn between wanting to tell everyone all about it, and wanting to be bear bones about it so you go listen to it in awe. This piece really is an epic..acoustic work, piano work, some darn good strings work..even a cello solo at about 5:30...guitar solo at about 7:07 to roughly 7:55...break...then right back into it...we get a different, slightly harder section around 8:53 or so...even the strings get harder, with a pickup in the drumming..then back to the epic sound, but with heavier guitar work...not a shred solo, but some slight shredding about 9:58 or so...till roughly 10:31..and we end from about 11:45 or so till the end with some piano...
I have been listening to this album alot lately, and honestly, this album does deserve a 5/5, not a 4.5/5 like I originally gave it.
The fact is, these guys have combined the best of many worlds here, and turned it into a hell of a record. Hard riffs, great basswork, guitar solos, acoustic guitar, piano, string arrangments, powerful singing...honestly, I think there is something here for everyone, at least in one or two songs.
To anyone who likes long, epic songs, I highly recommend getting Figure 8, either off the net or from me, because it is truely a masterpiece.