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Redemption – The Art of Loss Review

Released by: Metal Blade Records

Release Date: February 26th, 2016

Genre: Progressive Metal

Links: https://www.facebook.com/RedemptionBand

 

Redemption line-up:

Ray Alder – Vocals
Nick van Dyk – Guitars and Keyboards
Sean Andrews – Bass Guitar
Chris Quirarte – Drums

 

Tracklist:

1. The Art of Loss (featuring Simone Mularoni and Chris Poland)
2. Slouching Towards Bethlehem (featuring Simone Mularoni and Chris Poland)
3. Damaged (featuring Marty Friedman)
4. Hope Dies Last (featuring Chris Poland)
5. That Golden Light
6. Thirty Silver (featuring Chris Poland, Marty Friedman, and Chris Broderick)
7. The Center of the Fire (featuring Chris Poland)
8. Love Reign o’er Me (The Who cover; featuring John Bush and Chris Poland)
9. At Day’s End (featuring Chris Poland and Simone Mularoni)

 

Ray Alder has been one of my favorite vocalists for a couple of decades now. Since hearing his first album with Fates Warning, No Exit, I was instantly hooked to not only their music, but his distinct voice. He has also offered his talents to the bands such as Engine and Redemption, both of which are considerably different stylistically from FW, but both bands have released some excellent material. I believe Engine is now defunct, but Redemption is still very much alive and are releasing yet another masterpiece entitled The Art of Loss.

2011’s This Mortal Coil was musically a fantastic collection of songs, and some very intriguing covers on the deluxe edition, however the production didn’t live up to their typical greatness and truly took away from an otherwise brilliant album. I was hoping that the production value of the new one would be back to their usual greatness, and it truly is. After realizing that the album would be sonically better than the previous, the next thing I picked up on was how this may very well be Alder’s strongest performance to date. His voice sounds so powerful and emotive. Matching that is some of the best progressive metal to come out in a while. Songs like “Slouching Towards Bethlehem,” “Thirty Silver,” and “Hope Dies Last” combine stunning guitar passages with perfectly phrased solos, heavy yet melodic hooks, and a certain sense of hope throughout the album. The final song, “At Days End,” is a stunning epic that is very much like a mini-rock opera, full of layers of feelings, surprising and captivating changes musically, and truly a culmination of everything Redemption has done thus far. There is also a fantastic cover of The Who classic “Love Reign O’er Me, an excellent duet with John Bush of Armored Saint.

As is the case with any progressive album, some folks will get it, and some won’t. Redemption are truly one of the more accessible prog bands out there and The Art of Loss is such a fantastic album. After listening to this one a few times I decided to reacquaint myself with their past releases and they truly are a fantastic band that everyone should check out. Even with the poor production of This Mortal Coil, it is still full of great music, and the albums prior to it and the new one are exemplary examples of how progressive music can appeal to the masses. Don’t just take my word for it though, check it out yourself

 

Written by: Chris Martin

Ratings: Chris  9/10

 

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