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Review: Vanishing Point - Embrace The Silence
Vanishing Point
Embrace The Silence

Label: Dockyard 1
Year released: 2005
Duration: 79:37
Tracks: 13
Genre: Progressive Power Metal

Rating: 4.35/5

Review online: February 7, 2006
Reviewed by: Ivan the Bludgeon
Readers Rating
Embrace The Silence

Rated 4/5 (80%) (6 Votes)

Australian power/progressive metal elegantly put into the garments of exuberant key and piano roulades masterly interlaced with some Maiden's trademarks time and again. Hell! That sounds fishy, doesn't it? But don't be so skeptical about these wallabies for they are simply a pack of surprises. In the beginning, I wasn't impressed with this record at all. "Another power metal band hopelessly trying to shroud its genericness behind the shield of progressiveness", was my adverse verdict upon a couple of listens. "Not so dusty", said I having given this album another chance after it had spent a month or so on my "outcast" shelf.

Being the band's third release only in nearly 9 years this album is definitely a grower and demands your undivided attention; otherwise you risk missing all those tiny details making it outshine. Take, for example, the opening mid-tempo track Hollow. Based mainly on unrhythmical riffs tightly wrapped in pounding bass and drums it shows tons of sporadic elements such as high-flown key interludes, Maiden-esque twin solos, guitar-key duels plus an absolutely infectious chorus. My Virtue unfolds as a leisurely nearly gothic song, but shortly accelerates into a full-fledged power opus rested upon right in your face leads sounding in unison with the main vocal part. And again a careful listener will be granted with plentiful progressive touches and refined piano work. A power semi-ballad Embraced with its luminous keys and tranquilizing bass is able to flux an iceberg with its warmth and charm. Especially good is Season Of Sundays raining down on you its censuring lyrics. Constantly balancing on the verge of harmony and chaos this track literally knocks you down. Just few could resist this key-guitar mighty unison riffs shuffled with lots of breaks and Maiden-esque twin solos. Well, most of the tracks here are quite versatile and have their own distinctive features but the nuts and bolts are mainly common: inventive guitars and keys effectively framed in solid rhythm section plus the whole mass of alluring progressive components.

Perfectly answering today's criteria of sound quality both in mixing and mastering, this quintet can also boast of a set of super technical musicians each of whom gets a straight A from me for their contributions. The man behind the mike, Silvio Massaro, is simply a crack-jack. Displaying some Dickinson-esque range similarities, he still possesses those heart-felt singing peculiarities that make any band unique in a way.

Now complaints. A few of the songs, the far lesser part of them, lack either in originality or in adequate choruses, which tend to glide hopelessly into a more generic power metal channel. Besides, given this album's nearly 80 min length, it could only gain if they abridged it to some extent.

So what do we have in the upshot? A decent metal album that doesn't restrict itself to the hackneyed canons of the genre employing as many state-of-the-art elements as it can be allowed in order not to poop a grateful listener. So those whose taste is not far beyond the limits of the contemporary power-progressive style in the vein of Masterplan or say Karelia will definitely take to Embrace The Silence.

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