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Vanishing Point - Distant is the Sun CD (album) cover


Vanishing Point

Progressive Metal

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4 stars Australian band VANISHING POINT started out towards the end of the 1990's, and in an 10 year long initial phase of activity released four albums and then more or less vanished following the release of the last of these albums in 2007. Come 2014 and they return with the CD "Distant Is the Sun", released through German label AFM Records.

The most striking aspect of this album isn't the chosen style of the band. The material contains enough twists and turns in structure, arrangements, pace and intensity to merit a description as a progressive metal band, and there are occasions where you can hear the affection the band has for good, old power metal too, and the liberal use of orchestration arrangements will make this a band with a strong appeal amongst a symphonic metal oriented crowd as well. But the stylistic diversity, even if ever so subtle at times, isn't the most important aspect of this album. In the like it or loathe it section this is one of those productions that revolves around intensity most of all.

The initial observation I get after listening to this production a few times, the last run through with full attention, is that I have a headache. Not because the music is lacking in quality or features any horrible details on any level. On the contrary, this is a very well made album on all levels, planned in details and executed to perfection is my impression. But it's also a rather intense affair throughout, an unrelenting attack that is hard to take in one sitting.

Dramatic orchestration details combined with staccato or chugging guitar riffs and rhythms of an equally dramatic nature goes hand in hand with loud, majestic guitar and keyboard arrangements, and whenever the keyboards or orchestration are toned down or when a more delicate piano motif are added to the proceedings instead, the guitars are given a loud and dominant role in the proceedings. Whether the songs are slow, midtempo or uptempo everything is intense and loud, with a dramatic flair, a loud mix or both of these combined. On the intensity scale this is a production that top range, and while we do get some sparse arrangements here and there with more of an atmospheric and careful nature they generally serve as instigators for the following intense attack. An intensity emphasized by the melodic, controlled yet also powerful lead vocals.

A couple of exceptions aside the songs are all striking, compelling and well made, and as I experience them relying fairly substantially on the high intensity to maintain tension and interest. Which is a make or break aspect of this production I guess, you really have to enjoy the in your face aspect of this album to be able to enjoy it, and if you crave details of a more careful, sophisticated nature this probably isn't an album that will intrigue you all that much.

So if you enjoy a band with a foot or so inside the progressive metal realm, liberally flavoring their compositions with aspects of power metal and symphonic metal, then Vanishing Point's most recent production "Distant Is the Sun" may well be an album that merits a check, and then first and foremost if you enjoy music of this kind that is fairly dramatic, loud and intense throughout.

Report this review (#1447252)
Posted Thursday, July 30, 2015 | Review Permalink
3 stars A fast paced album from start to finish. It lasts a good distance, running in at 64minutes.

Very strong drumming, guitars and vocals dominate this album. The orchestration interplays are also very good. The result is that I can't help but to make a comparison to the heavier side of Dream Theater; which can't a bad thing!!

All the tracks are classic power progressive metal with only the exception of; "Handful of Hope" which drifts nicely to a more mellow affair, and the finale track entitled "April" which closes the album with a reflective acoustic theme.

Without having heard the previous albums at the time of writing I would say that this is a band with intensity and skill. Time to review and research their back catalogue . A solid 3+ stars for Vanishing Point.

Report this review (#1813554)
Posted Monday, October 16, 2017 | Review Permalink

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