Vanishing Point - Distant is The Sun
AFM Records
Melodic Progressive Metal
14 songs (64:00)
Release year: 0
Vanishing Point, AFM Records
Reviewed by Joel
Album of the month

This new album will be a rise from the ashes" says longtime members Chris Porcianko(guitars) and Silvio Massaro(Vocals), and they couldn't be anymore accurate. Like the mystical phoenix that rose, Vanishing Point is back after almost SEVEN! long years. Their previous two albums, 2005's Embrace The Silence and 2007's The Fourth Season, showed a band finding their own signature sound. A mixture of progressive and melodic metal, that spanned every emotion, from sadness and melancholy to downright epic. Distance is The Sun, is a culmination of both those discs, with a renewed sense of spirit, heaviness, and overall technical musicianship.

Beyond Redemption, is an intro to the disc, and unlike most intros these days, this one does not consist of strings or a big symphonic arrangement. Like the songs that follow, it is piano, solid guitar playing and drumming. The song segues into King of Empty Promises, where strings and a heavy guitar riff start the song, with some very aggressive drumming. With their signature sound intact, the chorus shows what they do best, a majestic melodic chorus, with the per usual solid vocals from Massaro. The title track is next, and a song you can hear over at AFM's Soundcloud page. Like the song before it, the title track opens with guitars, keys and solid drumming, before it slows down about thirty five seconds in with Massaro singing over piano, before the band kicks into their melodic power metal/AOR that they are known for. The next three songs, When Truth Lies, Circle of Fire, and Denied Deliverance all are what Vanishing Point does best. Denied Deliverance features a great lead guitar solo, while guest vocalist Tony Kakko(Sonata Arctica) can be heard on the faster Circle of Fire. Let The River Run, features an A Capella opening, before the band joins in. When the rest of the band kicks in, it reminds me of great past songs, like Embraced from Embraced The Silence or Surrender from The Fourth Season. This is one of the most melodic songs on the disc, while not a true ballad, this song is one of their best melodic songs. The passionate vocals Massaro, with the songwriting, makes this a standout song. The darker and slower Story of Misery is next, and like My Virtue on Embrace the Silence, it shows Massaro's dynamic range, from a lower baritone, to his almost tenor like range. This is a very moving song, and features a very layered and melodic guitar solo.

Era Zero is the shortest song on the disc, at just three minutes and one of the heaviest. The drumming of Christian Nativo on this song is definitely a highlight, along with the triplet(a succession of three notes played fast together) guitar riff featured in the verses. Pillar of Sands is another mid-mid faster tempo of a song, that you can hear every instrument clearly, a good sign that the band made the right decision in producer, Sebastian "Seeb" Levermann(Orden Ogan<---another great band!). This is one of the most progressive sounding songs, on the entire disc, with several guitar and keyboard solos, different tempos, and like the songs before it, Massaro's dynamic vocals. As December Fades is another melodic rocker while Handful of Hope is another melodic slower song that gets heavier as the song progresses. The song also highlights Massaro's vocals and the melodic guitar solos. The riffing and piano work of Walls of Silence, is really well played, and for a song that is at near the end of a disc, its of the same quality as the songs that came before it. A faster guitar riff, with symphonic keyboard flourishes can be heard behind Massaro's vocals, and again like the songs before it, each individual instrument can be heard, every nuisance and intricacy of each can be heard. A stop and go riff can be heard with the guitar solo(more like wailing in the most technical, non-"Look at what I can do!" way), can be heard in the last quarter of the song. Its the last song featuring vocals. The acoustic instrumental song April is the final song on the disc, while not a horrible song, at over four minutes, its not exactly the best song to finish out the disc, with the energy that was Wall of Silence being drained away. IF that is my only complaint, then go ahead and tell me I am nitpicking because, honestly I don't see anything wrong with this release, other than I wished it would have came out earlier!

Like I said before, like the mythical phoenix rising from its ashes, here is Vanishing Point, rising above everything they have created before, without alienating what made them great in the first place. If you enjoy melodic progressive metal, and have never heard of this Australian band, please take the time to check them out, you will not regret it.

Killing Songs :
ALL but April
Joel quoted 93 / 100
Other albums by Vanishing Point that we have reviewed:
Vanishing Point - Dead Elysium reviewed by Ben and quoted 90 / 100
Vanishing Point - The Fourth Season reviewed by Marty and quoted 92 / 100
Vanishing Point - Embrace The Silence reviewed by Ian and quoted 82 / 100
Vanishing Point - Tangled In Dream reviewed by Chris and quoted 86 / 100
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