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Attack Of The Rising - Game Changer

Attack Of The Rising
Game Changer
by Ian Yeara at 16 September 2021, 9:27 PM

This week I've got a traditional Heavy Metal band from LA. Traditional Metal is pretty hit and miss for me, a lot of it blends together and doesn't manage to balance great riffs, good vocals and interesting harmony well enough for my tastes. Based on the cover art and name of this band I thought for sure I wasn't going to enjoy this, but surprisingly these guys actually managed to balance the aforementioned elements of songwriting. The riffs are really entertaining and not too repetitive, they say variety is the spice of life and it's always true. The rhythm section keeps things varied enough and the guitars really sound great. I also really like the vocals, they're a little rough, but with layering and production they managed to get a great sound out that does just enough to keep from sliding into annoying territory.

I don’t really listen to a ton of this kind of Metal, but I’ve listened to enough JAG PANZER and CHILDREN OF THE REPTILE to know that if that is your kind of Heavy Metal, then you’ll like this. I suppose most of this positivity stems from the production, it balances that early 90s sound with the snare drum on the verge of being annoying, but it works here. The vocals are mixed perfectly for this style; the effects are used as much as they need to and not a bit more. These guys clearly set out to write an homage to traditional Heavy Metal and even though it’s not one of my favorite genres, I can say ATTACK OF THE RISING has done a good job.

This is the kind of affair where I like parts of each song, but I don’t like all the songs. This is mostly owed to me being a power metal fan, the parts that remind me more of power metal are of course going to be my favorite. For example, I really enjoyed “On the Horizon” and “Burning Daylight”, but my favorite song has to be “Fear No Evil”. This band is obviously capable of more complex songwriting, and this song more than any other dips its toes in the Progressive Metal pool, which I like even more than Power Metal. Even the songs I don’t care for as much, I can still see the appeal in them and I’m excited for people who are actually into the genre to listen to this album because I think they’re going to like it a lot. "Last Stand" also caught my attention, it really balances on that line between Heavy Metal and Hard Rock, but gods are these guitar players good. Tony Lepre and Billy Sabina absolutely nailed it, I’ve known guys that can really only play one style of guitars, to the point of where, despite their skill in their own niche, when they try to play outside that style it’s cringeworthily, these guys can jam with the best of Rock and roll and at least Traditional Metal and I have a lot of respect for them.

Some of the slower songs I didn’t really care for, but “Opus X” for example still has moments where the harmonies are allowed to take over and it creates some really interesting tension. This is their first album so I can definitely cut them some slack on slime of the more boring sections and I think their next album has the potential to be a lot more. I would love to see these guys write a 10+ minute song, I think they’re capable of writing great epics and honestly that might fit better with their style.

I like to explain my preferences, not just to blow my own horn or anything like that but because I want you the reader to understand where I’m coming from, even if it’s not a style of music I would normally choose to listen to, I will never simply dismiss an album out of hand, I will take the time to go through it and find the parts of it I like, this applies to any album I ever review. I’m an optimist like that, even when I don’t like an album I like to find the highlights, the positives because ultimately we’re all musicians, music lovers, and creators and I never want to discourage someone from creating, from executing their vision.

Even if something’s not for me, there’s always someone out there who will appreciate it and that ladies and gentlemen is the true beauty of free thought, and of individuality. Musically speaking this album is tight and well written and I have a lot of respect for ATTACK OF THE RISING, so let this be a lesson for me and anyone who reads this review; don’t judge a book or an album by its cover, you might just miss something special.

Songwriting: 7/10
Musicianship: 9/10
Memorability: 6/10
Production: 7/10

3 Star Rating

Tracklist:
1. On the Horizon
2. Gargula
3. Island of the Seven Skulls
4. Burning Daylight
5. Fear no Evil
6. Taker
7. Last Stand
8. Opus X
9. Eyes Closed
10. Voodoo
Lineup:
Chris Lepre - Drums
Tony Lepre - Guitar
Michael Risucci - Bass
Billy Sabina - Guitar
Kleber Mandrake - Vocals
Record Label: Independent
     


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