Album Reviews

James Labrie – Impermanent Resonance Review

james labrie impermanent resonance cover

Released by: Inside Out Music

Release Date: Out Now!!!

Genre: Progressive Metal



Line Up:

James LaBrie – Lead Vocals

Matt Guillory – Keyboards, Background Vocals

Marco Sfogli – Guitars

Ray Riendeau – Bass

Peter Wildoer – Drums, Screams



1. Agony

2. Undertow

3. Slight Of Hand

4. Back On The Ground

5. I Got You

6. Holding On

7. Lost In The Fire

8. Letting Go

9. Destined To Burn

10. Say You’re Still Mine

11. Amnesia

12. I Will Not Break


James Labrie has always been one of the best singers on the planet and has been in my top five favorites for a very long time. Everyone that knows him knows him as the long time singer for progressive metal legends Dream Theater. He has dabbled with some side projects over the years, most notably Mullmuzzler. I enjoyed both those albums as they were a departure from what he contributes with Dream Theater. In 2005 he released his first ever true solo album Elements of Persuasion, and I have to admit, it was fantastic. That was a fantastic year for this Labrie fan as it was also the same year as the release of Octavarium, another fantastic album. I suppose after Mullmuzzler’s albums I wasn’t expecting it to be quite as awesome as it was. Static Impulse was a pretty good album as well, though I didn’t love it quite as much as EoP. Now it’s 2013 and he has released his third solo album Impermanent Resonance. My expectations were very high and hopeful for it.

The thing I love about Labrie’s solo albums tends to be the fact that they’re ironically heavier than much of DT’s music. The other aspect is that with each release he finds his own “voice” so to speak, separating himself totally from what his fans has come to know from his past projects. Persuasion and Impulse have shaped the sound of Resonance. The first album still had some aspects of progressive music, but went a bit heavier and maintained its melodic sense. Static Impulse moved to a more “modern” sound while still upping the aggression. With Impermanent Resonance he has gone full throttle making super aggressive music, verging on almost progressive death metal, mixing his signature vocal abilities with growling vocals supplied by drummer Peter Wildoer, the band has created this cacophony of evil beauty, a dichotomy that works in this regard. Yet at the same time that the heaviness has increased it still maintains that melodic style that has been as much a part of his music sine Winter Rose as it has been with anything else. The combination of all these aspects of this album culminates to create an astounding album. And I don’t want anyone that is frightened by growling vocals or the use of “death metal” in this write up to worry them they might not enjoy this album as much as I do. The growls can be a little much for some, but to me it accents more than it detracts. And nothing on here remotely comes off as progressive death metal, but some of the material is definitely the heaviest stuff Labrie has worked on. Songs like “Slight of Hand,” “Destined To Burn,” “Amnesia,” and “Agony” were the initial standouts for me, however the whole album is pretty phenomenal.

If Impermanent Resonance and Elements of Persuasion are going to echo each other, then it looks like the new s/t Dream Theater album is going to be incredible as well. And like back then it will be a win-win situation for we the fans. That my friend is great news! I’m glad James Labrie is still able to put out top notch music and perform at the level he is these days. His voice truly is a gift and his music is more than deserving of many accolades. Do yourself a favor and get this album. I’m already looking forward to listening to it again.



Written by Chris Martin

Ratings    Chris    8/10

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