Released 20th May 2011 on Lion Music
“Fall From Grace” marks the label (Lion Music) debut for Canadian progressive power metallers Borealis after one well received independently released offering “World Of Silence”. The new offering sees a step up in every area from production to presentation (excellent artwork) to song craft with the album being home to 9 tracks that only offer 1 track of repsite from a full on metallic delivery.
The first thing to hit you is that this a damn good sounding release, powerful with excellent clarity between instruments and arguably one of the best to have surfaced on Lion Music so kudos to the band and Jordan Valeriote at Sundown Studio. Fortunately the album doesn’t just sound good as the quality of song is also exceptionally high.
Opener “Finest Hour” kicks off at a frantic pace, but let’s up a little for its melodic chorus. “Words I Failed To Say” is slower and more groove orientated with a nice balance between guitar and keyboard orchestration, the vocal melodies of Matt Marinelli once again impress and his voice which stays more in mid-range territory is a nice change to a lot of the high end warblers the genre often produces. The title-track will keep heads banging frantically in the live arena whilst album preview track “Where We Started” is a nice track that fuses all the traits heard so far.
Album highlight to these ears is “Breaking The Curse” which is one of the more melodic mid tempo numbers and again with a chorus that is exceptionally strong – and original with it. “Regeneration” is back to beating the living shit out of you with some fine double bass drum work of Sean Dowell being particularly praiseworthy and locking in well with the guitar duo of Ken Fobert and Matt Marinelli (yes the clever bugger handles guitar and vocals duties). “Watch The World Collide” is the only track to offer some respite from the full on delivery elsewhere and its acoustic guitar and orchestrated strings make a nice bed for the vocals before the closing brace of “Take You Over” and “Forgotten Forever” sees the album go out with a bang with more potent riffs and high energy delivery from all involved.
With “Fall From Grace” you can easily see why Borealis caused such an impression at ProgPower USA 2010with this new material. All tracks are concise in length with the focus being firmly on the song. The performances are for the most part excellent, one might argue the lead guitar work is lacking a little character but there are no real complaints here as the riffing is first class. Overall this is a very impressive offering and I have a feeling Borealis may well make quite an impression worldwide with “Fall From Grace”.
Rating – 90%