|Ian Parry Visions||Escape Music|
It has been a while between solo drinks for vocalist Ian Parry – 10 years in fact! He wastes no time sliding back into the contemporary metal scene by hooking up with members of Vanden Plas, Elergy, Within Temptation and Kamelot.|
2 years in the making, the result is a tough, hard hitting contemporary European melodic metal release that I think all Parry fans will be happy with. Something that stands out for me is the expanded use of backing vocals and a more dramatic role for the keyboards, which is something being used to great effects by a number of currently hot metal acts.
In Parry's own words, he stated that he wanted to try something more modern and commercial while retaining past influences of progressive rock and symphonic metal.
That he has done – this is a very dramatic record, but one that also features some complex material set around several other tracks which have almost immediate commercial appeal.
The opening track Innocent Minds features a female lead vocal alongside Ian (name uncredited on promo copy) as well as at various other times throughout the album in a backing capacity. The song is very contemporary and reminds me of Lana Lane / Nightwish style metal sound.
Angels features an Evanescence friendly sound and a massive chorus for a metal song, backed with female harmony vocals. Another Day is a big symphonic ballad and Fallin' follows a similar path.
Taking a definite side step away from the rest of the album is the modern high-tech sounds of Slip Away, a soft ballad filled with production effects and samples.
Lovin' A Stranger shows further diversity with a dramatic flurry of guitars and a sound approach more akin to a film score.
No Man's Land changes the course of the album again, offering up a piano ballad, with the commercial hard rocker Visions closing out the album.
The tweaking of Parry's approach sees him deliver a very contemporary melodic metal release which should find favor with new and old fans alike. I think this is one of the more stand out releases from a long career.
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