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Threshold - March of Progress CD (album) cover




Progressive Metal

4.04 | 474 ratings

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kev rowland
Special Collaborator
Honorary Reviewer
5 stars Many years ago I often used to catch up with Karl Groom in the early Shadowland/Strangers On A Train days, and we would stop and have a chat. Some time in 1993 we were both at the same gig and he told me that his own band Threshold were just about to release their debut album and he had just received his first CD. I said that I would love to hear it (meaning when all the stock had arrived) but he gave me his own copy and asked me to give it a fair play. That night I was blown away as I drove the 100 miles home and listened to what to me was the epitome of prog metal. I already knew Damian Wilson from Landmarq, and here he was blasting over the top of riffing guitars and intense keyboards from Richard West. To this day 'Wounded Land' contains two of my all-time favourite songs in "Paradox" and "Sanity's End". Over the years I managed to catch the band in concert a few times, and always enjoyed their output. Damian (and others, particularly drummers for some reason until Johanne settled in the seat) left for pastures new, but Karl and Richard kept the band going. Damian returned in 2007 and this is the first album since he rejoined the fold, so it was with great expectations that I put this on the player. Would the band be as good as I remembered? I hadn't heard their last album 'Dead Reckoning' but I highly rated 'Subsurface' from 2004 and had all the others, so would this be any good?

To be honest, it as if the band has never been away. All power to the other musicians who have been involved over the years, but the current lineup has a strength and presence that lifts this album to a whole new level. Damian's voice seems to be stronger than ever, and he hits the notes with ease and adds a class and presence that most singers would give their right arm for. Since leaving Threshold the first time he has performed at the highest level with Rick Wakeman, Ayreon, Star One and many others, and I still wonder what Maiden would have sounded like if they had picked Damian instead of Blaze after Bruce (Damian was shortlisted for the gig). This is prog metal at its' finest, yet is quite different to Dream Theater. This is much more riff based and far more metallic in nature so in truth this is metal prog as opposed to the normal billing. Given that Nuclear Blast aren't generally known for their progressive stance maybe that's not that surprising.

From first song to the last I played this with a smile on my face, just reaching over to the controls every so often to turn it up just that little bit louder. Johanne and Steve provide the bottom end, Karl and Pete lock the guitars in tight, Richard provides the finesse and Damian rises over it all. Who could wish for anything more than this? Whatever you want from a prog metal/melodic metal album then take it from me it is here. Threshold are back with a bang, just don't leave it so long for the next album guys. Five stars all the wey.

kev rowland | 5/5 |


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