Deadrisen is a new band put together by old stagers Mike LePond and Rod Rivera and they have brought in a talented and intriguing team of musicians with vocalist Will Shaw (Heir Apparent), keyboardist Tony Stahl (Livesay) and drummer Dan Prestup (Midnight Eternal) joining guitarist Rivera (Christian rock band Rivera Bomma) and the ever busy bassist LePond (Symphony X), So, given the musicians involved then you could make a fairly accurate guess that this is a progressive metal album and you would be 100% correct.
I have seen a couple of fairly negative reviews complaining that they sound a little like Symphony X and that they bring nothing new to progressive metal but my response would be that Symphony X is a huge influence in the prog metal genre and when you have Mike LePond onboard than how can you not have some of their influences? As for not bringing anything new, this is one of the problems when we now have so many highly specific sub genres and if you bring something new then does this mean that it is not prog metal anymore? Sometimes, we over analyse the music and also seem to want bands to evolve and grow but then, when they do, we complain that the new material is not as good as the old stuff, how can they win? So, the answer to the question ‘is the album any good’ is yes, of course it is and given the musicians how could it be anything else? Will Shaw is a fabulous singer and is glorious in the upper register and Rod Rivera is a phenomenal guitarist and they both would light up any band. We all know about the talents of the prodigious Mike LePond and all of the musicians on display bring a wealth of influences with them which include Judas Priest, Deep Purple, Richie Blackmore plus many others too. As well, there are shades of blues rock and thrash but the overriding arch is progressive metal and they do this damn well. If you want a nice but heavy ballad then try Reach For The Sun or exciting cover then listen to their take on For Whom The Bell Tolls, the Metallica song that closes the album.
Power, grace and panache are evident throughout this release with some awesome individual displays but collectively they are a real force. Crank up the volume and revel in the ferocity that is the track Prophecy but this is just a sample of what is to offer and the intensity is maintained through the ten tracks of premier progressive metal on display here. Deadrisen may be a new name but they are a welcome addition to the prog metal roster and they have delivered and incredible album for us all to revel in.