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Protest the Hero - Fortress CD (album) cover


Protest the Hero


Tech/Extreme Prog Metal

3.56 | 117 ratings

From, the ultimate progressive rock music website

The Pessimist
Prog Reviewer
4 stars I was recommended this album by a Fall Of Troy fan, she said it was pretty progressive. I didn't expect much of it, coming from a fan of Fall Of Troy, and band which I don't particularly like. So I asked to borrow it instead of splashing out about 10 big ones on a CD I might not even like. The conclusion to this short parable is that I still haven't given the record back. I enjoy it so much, it is actually situated on the middle part of my CD shelf so as I can reach it easily, right next to all my Opeth CDs, Destroy Erase Improve, Chaosphere, Colors and various other classic metal albums.

At a glance, this seems like another Post-Hardcore album, a la Fall Of Troy. But by the second spin I realised just how incredible this band truly is. The virtuosity, the technicallity, the tasteful melody cuts and the riffs... They are all top notch. It's also worth mentioning that there is no strong/weak track at all on this album. It flows beautifully from track 1 to track 10. It's simply one of those albums. It has a concept album feel where all the songs seem to merge into each other - not absent to the help of special effects however.

Some may dispute about the vocals on this album. I do not. They are perfect actually, the singer reminds me a little of Cedric Bixler from The Mars Volta, one of my favourite vocalists. However, like Cedric, Protest The Hero are an acquired taste in the vox department. Like Guiness, Marmite and all other black foods and drinks, you either love them or hate them. I love them, and I'm sure most of the ProgArchives community will too. I have to say as well that the voices in Fortress fit the lyrics almost perfectly. Listen out for them: you will see what I mean. The semi-aggressive, semi-melodic style adopted by the vocalists is the perfect mould for the themes celebrated in this album.

That is about it for me. This is second best album of the year, next to Traced In Air at the top spot. If you are a fan of Extreme Metal, then you should go out and buy this album. If you are not, then you should give it some time. It will take you around 30 listens to get used to the vocals style and its heaviness, but you will not turn back. You have my word. Not a masterpiece, but let's face it: those are hard to come by nowadays. 4 stars from me.

The Pessimist | 4/5 |


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