Album Reviews

Borealis – The Offering Review

AFM Records 
23 March 2018

 

Line Up:

Matt Marinelli (Vocals & Guitars)
Ken Fobert (Guitars)
Trevor Mcbride (Bass)
Sean Werlick (Keyboards)
Sean Dowell (Drums)

 

Tracklist:

01. The Fire Between Us
02. Sign Of No Return
03. The Offering 
04. River
05. The Second Son
06. The Devil’s Hand
07. Into The Light
08. Scarlet Angel
09. The Awakening
10. The Path
11. Forever Lost 
12. The Ghosts Of Innocence

 

When I covered the Charlotte stop on Evergrey’s tour of the states a few years ago I was lucky enough to become acquainted with one of their amazing support bands Borealis. Blown away by their performance then equally impressed with the lengthy discussion with singer/guitarist Matt Marinelli after the show, I instantly became a fan of them. Coming from a very Evergrey influence, Borealis is one of the best melodic Prog Metal bands going today. And nothing demonstrates that more than their latest offering, The Offering (a little accidental irony there.)

It feels like to me that after revisiting their first two albums, re-recording them both, while also fresh off such a strong album as Purgatory, the band was ready to forge ahead and create what is easily their best album to date. While still maintaining that same Evergrey kind of feel (melodic Prog delivered darkly and heavily,) the band has gone to some lengths to distance itself from sounding so much like Evergrey and more like themselves. I’m not saying that Borealis was a clone, but it was very obvious the influence- so much so that one could call them the little brothers of Evergrey. A much darker and heavier album, Borealis create the perfect blend of memorable hooks, driving riffs, and songs dripping with emotion and seething with passion. Tracks like “The Second Son,” “Sign of No Return,” and “The Devil’s Hand” show how much further along this young band has traversed in their heavy metal journey.

The Offering takes the band to the next level. Better songwriting, stellar performances, and such power sonically make this an easy contender for album of the year for me. It’s simply amazing to hear such a young band make such a veteran album as this. It’s also one of those albums that with each spin you hear something or feel something you missed on the previous listens. This is going to be an album that will stick with me a long time.

 

Written by: Chris Martin

Ratings: 9/10

 

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