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James LaBrie - Static Impulse CD (album) cover


James LaBrie


Progressive Metal

3.53 | 104 ratings

From, the ultimate progressive rock music website

4 stars James LaBrie's 2005 album Elements of Persuasion showed that when it comes to modern sounding proggy metal, he's a force to be reckoned with. In 2010 LaBrie returned with a new album Static Impulse, this time with a bit different sound arsenal.

Retained from EoP was his writing partner Matt Guillory and the Italian guitar prodigy Marco Sfogli, giving some continuance to the overall sound. Especially Guillory with his guitar-like keyboard solos is as much a part of the sound of LaBrie albums as LaBrie himself. The new boys this time are the Swedish drummer/vocalist Peter Wildoer who along with the drumming also handles the growl vocals (!), and bassist Ray Riendeau.

And what about the music then? Well, 12 tracks of melodic metal, with some prog and death metal thrown in to spice things up. At the same time Static Impulse manages both to follow its predecessor and be different enough. LaBrie's singing is top notch, and Wildoer's growls seem to fit very well into the tapestry, which I really didn't expect. The instrumentation overall is of expected quality, and the stars (like with EoP) are Guillory and Sfogli, creating some very memorable solos.

In the end we are left with 12 quality songs, with strong, good melodies and enough crunch to satisfy us who like metal. It might not be a very complex album, but it's not just any straight metal either. 4 stars.

nikow | 4/5 |


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