NO GRAVITY – WORLDS IN COLLISION

Out now on Lion Music

No Gravity are a new progressive power metal outfit and the brainchild of renowned guitarist Simone Fiorletta. Their debut release ‘Worlds In Collision’ features some of the most illustrious vocalists in the Italian power/prog metal field with  Michele Luppi (Killing Touch, ex Vision Divine), Fabio Lione (Rhapsody Of Fire, Vision Divine), Mark Basile (DGM), Roberto Tiranti (Labyrinth) and Emiliano Germani (Moonlight Comedy), along with German Andy Kuntz (Vanden Plas) providing the vocal angle.

Fiorletta may of ( it could be argued) played it safe by allowing the vocalists to devise their own melodies and lyrics, but this could also be seen as a wise move as you are essentially getting trademark performances from all involved.  To label the album notable for its vocalists alone is however doing a disservice to the music on offer, which whilst  mostly progressive is also heavy with even some modern techno elements.  Instrumental leads are perhaps not quite as forthcoming as one would expect from a guitarist of Fiorletta’s stature despite 8 of the 9 tracks clocking in at over the 5 minute mark, so full compliments to Simone for delivering a strong song based release.

Highlights come in the guise of “The Killer”, the middle east tinged “Religious Beliefs” and the Andy Kuntz led “Can’t Dream Anymore” which will please all Vanden Plas fans immensely; yet all track serve up enjoyable moments.

Shortcomings? I preferred Fiorletta guitar tone on Moonlight Comedy’s “Dorothy” album, and the production is a little raw in places but otherwise it’s a solid effort from start to finish.

The host of guest vocalists is initially bound to draw intrigue from fans, yet ultimately No Gravity serve up an identifiable sound no matter who the singer on “Worlds In Collision”, which overall is a very good foundation to build on with future releases.

An enjoyable debut.

Rating – 85%

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INFINITY OVERTURE – WELCOME TO INFINITY PT.1 (REVIEW)

Released January 21st 2011 on Lion Music

It’s often considered dangerous when a band sees fit to change musical styles.  That said, in the case of Danish metallers Infinity Overture that change is actually one that works. 

The band formerly delivered a debut in a symphonic metal vein on “Welcome To Infinity” (with Ian Parry on vocals) and a fine offering it was too, yet underneath there were progressive elements and some gothic overtones.    Band leader / guitarist Niels Vejlyt has seen fit to ring the changes bringing out these  “darker” elements further and also changing band personnel to better suit the new stripped back style.  So out is Ian Parry and in is newcomer female vocalist Kimmie Tenna Nielsen who is a superb find possessing a voice that is angelic yet powerful at the same time.  I am not normally one for female vocalists in metal but Niels has found a diamond here.

Musically the band deliver dark metal with lots of 7 string guitar and virtuosic solos but overall strong songs which are extremely well crafted.  Sonically the album is clean, clear and vibrant (mix by Sascha Paeth).  A couple of guest appearances from Fabio Lione (Rhapsody Of Fire) and Amanda Somerville add some further textures yet the band of Vejlyt, Nielsen, bassist Bernardo Fesch and drummer Jakob Vand hold a tight ship. 

Highlight come in the guise of opener “The Hunger”, “Secrets”, “Smoke & Mirrors” and the title track.  But my favourite track comes in the form of the melodic waters of “Angels” where Nielsen is quite superb and this is equalled by the soulful guitar solo from Vejlyt.  This track is worth the price of admission alone.

Overall “Welcome To Infinity pt.1” could be seen as a fresh start for the band in its own right and to these ears a direction much more to my liking.  The song writing is inspired, the performances top notch and its well packaged too.  Check it out.

Rating – 90%