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Album Reviews : Vanishing Point – The Fourth Season

By on May 19, 2008

Now on to their fourth release, Melbourne’s Vanishing Point have once again proved why they are one of the biggest power metal acts in Australia. They improve with each release, constantly moving forward, and this new one is definitely not an exception. There’s a bit more of a prog influence throughout this release, but the massive choruses and catchy melodies are still as prominent as ever.

The first thing I noticed is the fact that “The Fourth Season” is a good half hour shorter than their previous release. It’s still a decent length, clocking in just short of 50 minutes, and actually features more variety than any of their past releases. Thankfully, this means the occasional déjà vu moments that occurred listening through “Embrace the Silence” aren’t present.

The albums opener “Embodiment” instantly reveals the somewhat heavier, and prog-ier direction they’ve taken, while Silvio’s very melodic vocals soar over the top, keeping true to the powerful, melodic sound they are famous for. “Tyranny of Distance” is a fantastic mixture of Vanishing Point’s mellower sound as well as their big choruses, with a proggy interlude half way through. This song would be the best indicator of their overall sound for new listeners. “Surrender”, the album’s single, is one of the definite highlights. The chorus is absolutely beautiful with Silvio bringing a lot of emotion into his voice. “Hope Among the Heartless” is another fantastic mixture of their different paced material. “Gaia”, a short, mellow track features as a fantastic intro to “I Within I”, with the album then powering through “Behind the Open Door” and “Ashen Sky” before slowing down to the album slowest track “One Foot in Both Worlds”. The album doesn’t feature anywhere near as much ballad material as their previous work with this song being the closest they come, and while it is a fairly slow one it still has some very powerful sections. “Wake Me”, the albums last real song continues along the same lines as the earlier songs on the album. The albums closer is an interesting; it’s a very mellow track almost entirely of keyboards. Over the top are spoken words (not from the band, it seems to be taken from a film perhaps), occasionally interrupted by some powerful yet solemn vocals from Silvo. This works very well to close the album, and is done absolutely brilliantly.

This is a very solid album all the way through. Silvio’s vocals are top notch, the solo’s are as great as ever, the keys create some fantastic melodies and do well to make the band sound generally more melodic. The bass and drums aren’t anything spectacular but they fit in well and are fairly consistant.

There’s not a bad track here, and while it may be hard at points to pick which song you’re listening too, there is much more variety then their past releases and enough to keep my attention for the full 50 minutes. Fans of “Embrace the Silence” will most likely enjoy this one as well, and I for those who haven’t heard of the band then this is a good place to start. 7.5/10

Band: Vanishing Point
Album: The Fourth Season
Year: 2007
Genre: Progressive/Power Metal
Label: Dockyard 1
Origin: Victoria, Australia
http://www.myspace.com/vanishingpointofficial

Track Listing:
1. Embodiment
2. Tyranny of Distance
3. Surrender <- reviewers choice
4. Hope Among The Heartless
5. Gaia
6. I Within I
7. Behind the Open Door
8. Ashen Sky
9. One Foot in Both Worlds
10. Wake Me
11. A Day of Difference

About

Mitch Booth is the owner, designer and grand overlord of Metal Obsession. In the few seconds of spare time he has outside of this site, he also hosts a metal radio show over on PBS 106.7fm in Melbourne (Australia) and organises shows under the name Untitled Touring. You should follow him on Twitter.