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Man On Fire - Chrysalis CD (album) cover

CHRYSALIS

Man On Fire

 

Eclectic Prog

3.84 | 65 ratings

From Progarchives.com, the ultimate progressive rock music website

Conor Fynes
Prog Reviewer
4 stars 'Chrysalis' - Man On Fire (7/10)

Man On Fire is a band I have been hearing quite a bit about this year, thanks in no small part due to the release and subsequent acclaim of this, their latest album. 'Chrysalis' is certainly an album that gives listeners a reason to be excited; it is a well-played, inventive album that delivers quite a few thrills over its course. Despite nailing several aspects of their sound down smoothly, Man On Fire's ambition is a tad overbearing, and for every thing on 'Chrysalis' that strikes gold, there is something that could have been done better.

Man On Fire are first and foremost; a modern prog rock act. There is the tender homage to the old greats here, but the sound is not retro. In fact, it may be difficult to describe the sound of 'Chrysalis' appropriately with any one word, or ten. Actually, a fitting term would be 'diverse'; Man On Fire seem deadset on exploiting every style and avenue they can lay their instruments on. This equates to a shapeless monster that incorporates pop, metal, electronica, jazz, and even soul, funk, and R&B. Sure enough, Man On Fire both manages to load a lot into their music, and this sense of variety is what I think defines what Man On Fire have done with 'Chrysalis'. All the same, there are aspects of the sound that follow through most of the music here. The vocals here are paired between somewhat gruff male vocals, and a female vocalist that would not have sounded out of place in a gospel choir. The vocals of Man On Fire are generally quite strong and well arranged, and they do help glue the album together a little better.

Instrumentally, Man On Fire manages to hit each of the genres they dabble in quite well. They are not writing the book on any of these sounds, but the way they all come together equates to an album that constantly engages and surprises. The electronic material and female soul vocals of Elise Testone are arguably the best aspects of Man On Fire's sound. Overall however, this band's best selling point is their ability to throw so many sounds onto one album. Sadly, this is done in such a way that feels more like a comparison of many different strong sounds, rather than a smooth synthesis, as I would have preferred. An exciting release nonetheless, 'Chrysalis' is an inventive face of modern prog rock.

Conor Fynes | 4/5 |

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