Reviewed by MJBrady on 10 Jun 2003
Ken Golden's Laser's Edge sub - label for progressive metal music has released this new project cd, featuring musicians from Fates Warning, Steel Prophet, Symphony X, Engine and Reading Zero. As is always the case, the music gets the royal treatment for production standards. But the real question is does the musical content compare with the sound quality?
Well, the musicians themselves are not second rate performers, so they have that going for them. Yet in too many cases these 'project' recordings have delivered less than genuine results. I would liken the music not too surprisingly to Fates Warning on their more progressive albums, hard edged, semi progressive twists, and emphatic operatic vocals by Rick Mythiasin. His vocal tone is not the style that appeals to my ears, but for the range he sings he is very good, and I know many progmetal fans appreciate higher pitched singers.
Overall this cd has some interesting structures, the musicians are able to display their abilities during the ample doses of instrumental moments between the vocal verses. I personally find these parts the strength of the cd overall. Though i have noticed during many of these songs .there is a lack of cohesive melody lines to coincide with the arrangements. Seeming to leave the singer in a void apart from the musics direction.
Now without being too critical here, there certainly is enough great music on this cd to merit it's attraction to the prospective buyers out there, many have heard some prerelease hype surrounding this project, and I would encourage them to buy this, especially if you like the music of FW. I cannot say that any of the performers have turned in the finest hours on this either, Jason Rullo has some of the more respected hands and feet in progmetal, and this would be considered a journeymans effort on his part, not for lack of trying, but the music doesn't demand the same disciplines that he displays in Symphony X.
In summary, Redemption is a nice slice of progmetal, not a classic for the genre, but one that deserves to be mentioned with the better releases in this genre for 2003 thus far (June). The fact that it is debut of sorts, offers the hope for progress on a successive recording. Let's hope that the band can continue in their vision for this project.