Vanishing Point - Embrace The Silence
Dockyard1
Progressive Melodic Metal
13 songs (79:30)
Release year: 2005
Vanishing Point, Dockyard 1
Reviewed by Ian

I have listened to Vanishing Point for the first time back in 2000 when they released their second album Tangled In Dream. I was completely blown away by that melodic and powerful/emotional sound, by the great production and especially by the great vocals of the unknown (until then) Silvio Massaro. I was looking forward to their upcoming effort hoping that a new album would definitely put them on the spotlight.

Year after year passed by and Vanishing Point seemed to have completely vanished from the music world. Then a year ago rumors started appearing about a new Vanishing Point album tentatively named A Life Less. Finally the band’s third album Embrace The Silence is finally on the market, and, with a three album deal secured with the Dockyard 1 label I hope we won’t have to wait for another five years to get a new release from the Australian quintet (former sextet).

You could tell that this album has been five years in the making, with 13 songs clocking at almost 80 minutes, very polished and multi-layered sound, with dual guitar attack (courtesy of Chris Porcianko and Tommy Vucur) and despite the fact that the band has lost the keyboard player (Danny Olding) along the five year hiatus, with excellent keyboard structured rhythms and leads. The rhythm section of Joe Del Mastro – bass and Jack Lukic – drums provide the basis of the band’s tight and also compact sound. Fans of melodic progressive metal, or purely melodic metal will surely enjoy this album since it’s full of great melodic harmonies, catchy choruses, roaring guitar solos and above all a lead singer with a deep and emotional voice, great range and an open approach. If I were to compare him, I’d say that he sounds like a cross between Roy Khan's skill and Zach Stevens’s depth, with the power of Tom S. Englund. The main thing that binds these great lead vocalists is in my opinion the fact that they do not abuse their voices trying to reach the high notes but they rather stay in the mid range with more space available for depth and emotion. Silvio Massaro is indeed a voice to take notice of and a great front man for the band. The album opens with the great Hollow, an excellent full force guitar/keys rhythm blasting from the get-go, with an excellent keyboard crescendo and with Silvio Massaro giving one of the best performances on the entire album, with clean voice mid-range chorus showing us the ultra-wide depth of his pipes. My Virtue starts slow and then build up to a nice dual guitar attack with inspired leads. If Only I has a very melodic approach with fast guitars and a keyboard driven rhythm. Silvio shines on the chorus, entwined with great key licks. Live 2 Live has some excellent guitar work, with the solos being a natural extension of the rhythm, expanding effortlessly from the main structure of the song. Embraced has a Division Bell riff intro and is a more laid back song, lyrical and quiet, with wonderful melodies improved by the keyboard sound. Season Of Sundays has a top notched structured keyboard lead that allows the guitars to play the lead role with insightful and inspired solos. On Once A Believer we have a very good balance between the keys and the guitars, a fast pace song with a very catchy lead. A nice piano intermezzo joined by an inspired guitar solo enhances the warm and melodic atmosphere that is present throughout the entire album. Reason is the most popish song of the album with a piano intro following with a guitar up-tempo leading to a catchy chorus. The ninth song, Breath is a quiet ballad with nice unplugged guitars/keys sound with Silvio Massacre’s emotional voice delivering one of his best performances on the album. With Somebody Save Me we return to the trademark sound of the band, fast paced, melodic keyboard driven with soaring guitar rhythms and solos. Inside Yourself is the fastest song of the album, with good lyrics and and excellent surround sound. A Life Less is one of the strongest pieces on the album (to my knowledge it was supposed to be the title track a year ago), again fast paced with great arrangements, good rhythm changes, with the two guitars swapping leads and with Silvio’s performance rounding up the circular sound. The closer, As I Reflect, is a quiet and reflexive piece, finishing the album on a positive note.

The production of the album is very good; every member of the band has it own clear spot thus gaining a tight and complete sound. Despite the fact that the sound of the band is very music oriented, the technical side of the music is not at all neglected, the rhythm section is perfect and the guitar players are really gifted musicians that fit very well together. In my opinion, releasing such a long album, maybe the band should have taken some chances, stretching the boundaries a little bit and try for a more varied sound. I urge them form now on to try and expand or broaden their style a little bit since it’s clear that they master the melodic genre almost to perfection. Looking forward for new releases from these promising Aussie guys.

Killing Songs :
Hollow, Live 2 Live, Once A Believer, A LIfe Less
Ian quoted 82 / 100
Other albums by Vanishing Point that we have reviewed:
Vanishing Point - Distant is The Sun reviewed by Joel and quoted 93 / 100
Vanishing Point - The Fourth Season reviewed by Marty and quoted 92 / 100
Vanishing Point - Tangled In Dream reviewed by Chris and quoted 86 / 100
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