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Review: Verso - From Wings to Bare Bones
From Wings to Bare Bones

Label: Kampas Records
Year released: 2008
Duration: 44:52
Tracks: 11
Genre: Heavy Metal

Rating: 4.25/5

Review online: March 13, 2009
Reviewed by: Larry Griffin
Readers Rating
From Wings to Bare Bones

Rated 4/5 (80%) (2 Votes)

What shall we make of Verso, my dear Heavy Metal readers? It's hard to even peg this band down. They bear some slight similarities to the Nevermore school of dark, melodramatic Heavy Metal, except that is squashed by the fact that Verso actually have talent. They use a combination of clean and harsh vocals, much like the crop of Gothenburgy metalcore that popped up a few years back, except that is squashed by the fact that these guys have direction and aggression to their music, two things that the Gothenburg scene needs in spades right now.

Whatever you might conclude this is, Verso's From Wings to Bare Bones is a damn cool album, and it's really just good for the same basic reasons that a lot of simple metal albums are, the guitars and the vocals. The basic sound here is a heavy, pulverizing form of modern Traditional Metal with that contemporary tendency to drop out of the guitars and go into a slow mellow part or two, with strong clean vocals and equally strong harsh vocals. It's really surprising how good these vocals are. Petteri Salonen is a real talent, sounding expressive and muscular at the same time, belting out catchy and memorable choruses with the ease of a professional. His harsh vocals are done in moderation, and as such they sound pretty damn cool, never wearing out their welcome and always bringing a darker and more feral touch to the music. And proving that there truly is a way to do anything right, Verso actually write pretty damn good riffs for the fact that they're all modern chugging type riffs. Too many bands do this because they just don't seem to know how to do anything else, but Verso churn out heavy, distorted riffs like a captain commandeering his ship, with conviction and energy to spare on songs like the great "Dark on Every Side," the almost proggy "Stone Wing Angel" with its killer, pounding industrial break, or the intense journey through Hell that is titled "The Seasons End Grey." The band also creates quite a unique atmosphere, as on the bleak, dreary "Havoc State" or "No Love Lost." The closer "Weight of Desperation" is a great song, with the best vocal lines on the entire disc and a set of lethal riff attacks on the senses that will run you down like a tractor.

Verso are a very promising band, and although not every song here rules, there are still enough to make this a very worthwhile listen. Proggy without being self indulgent or cramming unnecessary parts in, heavy and dark without being boring and modern without sucking total elephant shit, From Wings to Bare Bones is one you won't want to miss. Recommended.

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