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Vanden Plas - Far Off Grace CD (album) cover

FAR OFF GRACE

Vanden Plas

 

Progressive Metal

3.88 | 76 ratings

From Progarchives.com, the ultimate progressive rock music website

Ramma
4 stars I've recently stumbled upon Vanden Plas and am still scratching my head as to how they remain relatively unknown?!?!? To me they sound like a cross between Dream Theater and Evergrey taking the best elements of both. Vocals are amazing, and the instrumental solos are as long or short as needed, melodic, purposeful and expertly performed.

Having listened to all of their albums multiple times over I can say that Far of Grace remains my favorite, but that's probably because I lean towards heavier music coupled with melodic moments. That said, every reviewer will hold a different opinion for the simple fact that:

1. All of Vanden Plas's albums are superb from beginning to end 2. Each album while similar has subtle differences, some heavier than others, some more experimental than others.

As such each reviewer will pick the album that most suits their musical interests.

So why Far of Grace? To me the individual songs stand out the most on this album. From the incredibly heavy moments of the album opener "I Can See" and track 3 "Into the Sun" to the softer moments of tracks like "I'm In You" and the beautiful "I Don't Miss You" this album never gets boring and is superb from beginning to end, with just one blemish - the cover song Dokken's Kiss of Death.

Were it not for this track I probably would have gone for a 5 star rating but instead have settled around 4.5. Why on earth Vanden Plas included this song is beyond me. Don't get me wrong, Kiss of Death is probably Dokken's finest moment but it doesn't belong on this album and although instrumentally and vocally it's performed well, it still doesn't compare to the original. It doesn't seem to fit with the theme and rhythm of the album in my opinion either.

If you've not listened to Vanden Plas pick up any album after Colour Temple, you won't be disappointed. The musicianship, vocals and song arrangement are superb across the entire discography without the pretentious playing of Dream Theater (not a bad thing, works for DT).

Ramma | 4/5 |

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