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Threshold - Critical Mass CD (album) cover




Progressive Metal

4.06 | 275 ratings

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4 stars 4.5 stars

I ended up purchasing this CD after reading all the reviews here about how good this band is. Let's just say the praises are well deserved. Threshold isn't a clone of Dream Theater, actually far from it. I hear some similarities, but that's just about it. Threshold concentrates more on song writing and less on drawn out instrumental madness. While the musicians are definitely top notch, I don't think they are quite as good as the DT members. The keyboard work reminds me more of the Kevin Moore era of DT than anything else. Tasteful without being overbearing. The vocal harmonies and lead singer actually remind me a lot of the current Uriah Heep lineup. Many of the songs would not sound that out of place on a Uriah Heep recording like "Sonic Origami" or "Sea of Light". Mac's vocals may not have the range of singers like James Labrie, but he sings very well within his range with more soul and genuine passion than most other prog metal singers I've heard over the years.

As I stated before, Threshold has excellent song writing and it shows on this album. There is differentiation among the songs so that the album doesn't sound like a continuously running song. There are definitely some good rockers (Phenomenon, Choices, Fragmentation), some power ballads (Falling Away, Round and Round, Avalon) and some extended Prog pieces (Echoes of Life, Critical Mass). Critical Mass (the song) even has an excellent, long, David Gilmour like guitar solo in the middle that sounds like it could have come off Floyd's MLoR album. Normally I hate power ballads with a passion, however I have to give these guys credit because the power ballads sound great without the normal syrupy sap and skin crawling factors. Honestly there isn't a weak track on the whole album.

Before buying this album I had never heard of this group. Now I can't take this cd out of my player. If this is the future of progressive metal, then the future looks to be very bright indeed. I can't recommend this disc enough. One listen to Phenomenon and I bet you'll be hooked as well. Now to buy that back catalogue......

dltonya | 4/5 |


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