First Signal – Face Your Fears Review

I have truly enjoyed the vocals of Canadian and Melodic Rock legend, Harry Hess. The famed frontman known for his main group Harem Scarem has undoubtedly delivered so much...

Released by: Frontiers Records

Release Date: February 17th, 2023

Genre: Melodic Rock

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

 

Line-Up:
Harry Hess – Vocals
Marco Pastorino – Guitar
Michele Guaitoli – Bass, Additional Guitar
Marco Andreetto – Drums

 

Tracklist:

Unbreakable
Situation Critical
Shoot The Bullet
Always Be There
Dominoes
Rain For Your Roses
Face Your Fears
Never Gonna Let You Go
Not This Time
In The Name Of Love
Never Be Silenced

 

I have truly enjoyed the vocals of Canadian and Melodic Rock legend, Harry Hess. The famed frontman known for his main group Harem Scarem has undoubtedly delivered so much consistent music with his solo projects in First Signal, to his guest works in side projects among other things, that he tends to get overlooked oftentimes for some reason. Perhaps the lack of commercial success in Harem has something to do with that. Either way, it shouldn’t be as he is a magnificent singer.

I like to put him up there with the likes of Jeff Scott Soto for instance, another unheralded vocalist who has so much diverse stuff that fills up his resume and honestly needs no introduction.

Hess’s power vocals have not toned down at all one bit over the years, despite still making solid music with Harem, he is now on his 5th studio album with his band First Signal. For “Face Your Fears”, Hess collaborated with producer Michele Guaitoli, who has produced albums by ISSA, Visions Of Atlantis, Kalidia, SheWolf, and many more. (He is also the vocalist for Visions Of Atlantis, Temperance, and ERA.)

To me, this album feels like it portrays some harder Melodic Rock stuff from the previous First Signal content. Yea it’s genre-driven and that’s okay, it doesn’t stall enough to deter the listener from grooving and rocking. And Hess does another fantastic job handling the vocals, as his high-rising power shows through with forceful attire.

The opener “Unbreakable” is a solid beginner which features a fast pace that sets the rest of the album going. Another high churner comes via “Dominoes”, once again Hess’s power vocals rush in and you feel it in your bones, the guitars are handled very well here. Keeping with the theme of driven guitars, we have some high shredding going on in “Face Your Fears”, which welcomes a European esque Hard Rock groove that works great here. To tone things down a bit, we get a more traditional Melodic Rock ballad in “Never Gonna Let You Go”, once more the charismatic vocals of Harry Hess make this song work wonders. Finally the record closer comes in the spirited “Never Be Silenced”, which keeps plowing away with an addictive chorus to close things down.

Look if you are one of those expecting something out of the ordinary from Harry Hess and Frontiers, well you probably know the spill here. This is tailored towards those that can’t get enough of very well-done, edgier Melodic Rock. I will say that Harry’s vocals are superb as usual, and the sound and production feel heavier to me than in past works. I was not seen skipping any tracks here, solid choice for a full playthrough and one which if you are a fan of Hess or a fan of high soaring vocals, you will enjoy for sure.

 

Written by: Shadow Editor

Ratings: 8/10

 

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