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Futures End - Memoirs of a Broken Man CD (album) cover

MEMOIRS OF A BROKEN MAN

Futures End

 

Progressive Metal

3.51 | 16 ratings

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siLLy puPPy
3 stars Despite releasing a single album in 2009, FUTURES END is still officially a bona bide active band and has been touted as a supergroup due to the fact that several members were in various metal bands in their career however that might be a stretch. The band was formed in Martinez, CA by guitarists Christian Wentz and Marc Pattison. Both Wentz and Pattison played in the Tampa, FL based Circle II Circle but the other lineup is what makes progressive metal fans salivate.

Along for this wild progressively infused power metal ride are drummer Joe Allen who has played in various bands including Dragonlord, Masqued, Sadus and Testament. Also on board is Zero Hour vocalist Fred Marshall but the true star of the show is bassist Steve DiGirogio who has played with long resume of metal acts: Artension, Autopsy, Charred Walls of the Damned, Control Denied, Dark Hall, Death, Dragonlord, Futures End, Iced Earth, Painmuseum, Roadrunner United, Sadus, Scariot, Soen, Testament. There were also a few guest musicians. Supergroup? Maybe, but whatever.

Hitting the market in 2009, FUTURES END caught the attention of the prog metal community with its so far only release MEMOIRS OF A BROKEN MAN which was received quite well and won all kinds of accolades for the stellar performances displayed. This is a concept album about a man who returns from war, falls into depression and becomes an alcoholic. His only friend commits suicide and he spirals deeper into the ultimate depression but ultimately if you pay attention the lyrical content, the story ends with a positive resolution which is what everyone wants from such a traumatic ordeal i would guess.

FUTURES END delivered a bombast power metal album infused with progressive twists and turns that take things a little further. The band has rightfully been compared to bands like Symphony X and Dream Theater but in all honesty isn't quite as creative as either band. Melodically the band is quite strong and technically as well with hard driving power grooves that display the member's most ferocious chops. Creatively though, MEMOIRS OF A BROKEN MAN falls short as there really isn't enough divers elements to warrant a 70 minute bombastic metal experience. While a few slower moments occur, FUTURES END delivers a balls to the wall Dragonforce inspired speedfest from beginning to end.

First flaw is that this album is way too derivative of Symphony X with its neoclassical guitar runs, heavy guitar riffing and vocal style. Second flaw is that the tracks are too similar. While the final track 'Powerslave,' a remake of the classic Iron Maiden track is perfectly performed, it seems totally incongruous with the overall concept and thematic flow. In the end, this is a satisfying technical display of musical chops but i sure wish that it would've been honed into a more interesting listening experience. All that is missing is some original content. Oh well, the desire to cash in on popular sounds is nothing new but this album is a testament to why so many bands fail to carryon on after an initial wow factor. Definitely worth a listen if you can't get enough Symphony X inspired technical prowess but unsatisfying if you want an album with staying power.

siLLy puPPy | 3/5 |

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