Symphorce


Truth To Promises

Symphorce - Truth To Promises ©1999 Noise
1. Truth To Promises
2. Drifted
3. Wounded
4. Retracing The Line
5. Stronghold
6. Across The Plains
7. Forevermore
8. Pouring Rain
9. Circles Are Broken
10. Sea Of Life

Featuring vocalist Andy B. Franck formerly from Ivanhoe, Truth To Promises is the debut CD from Symphorce, a melodic power metal fivesome. They are an aptly named group that has produced a very fine debut CD.

The music is guitar driven with some really great riffs. Similar sounding groups would include Nevermore and Eldritch. The songs are written by several different member of the band making for a lot of diversity in the sound. Franck wrote all the lyrics and sings with his aggressive voice that makes him immediately recognizable. He pours a lot of energy into his singing and it is that energetic singing that is really the highlight of the disc.

However, as much energy as he injects into the tracks, no single man can carry a full CD and do it well. The songs and playing don't have a unified feel to them. The overall effect is more discordant than it is pleasant. There are some tracks that really smoke and the band fits together well. There are others that seem forced or have something missing form them.

As a debut, the disjointed feel can be overlooked. I know a new CD is in the final stages of being released and the advance reviews seem favorable. Truth To Promises is not a power metal must have, but neither is it a must skip.

Review by Matthew Braymiller

Review date: 08/2000

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Sinctuary

Symphorce - Sinctuary ©2000 Noise
1. Eye Of Horus
2. Holy Sin
3. Until The Last
4. Blackened Skies
5. Burning Star
6. Insight
7. Reveal The Secrets
8. Resting Places
9. Nice Dreams
10. Soulfly
11. Freedom (Alter My Reality)
12. Gone Too Far

Power progressive metal has become a fairly stagnant pool over the years. Bands like Stratovarius release what seems to be the same album over and over without moving forward very perceptibly. Sinctuary from Symphorce manages to stir the waters nicely.

Vocalist Andy B. Franck has found a new sound for his singing and it really fits the styling behind the songs on this album to a T. The sound is much more aggressive verging on the brutal at times, but it is brought off with flair and panache. This album rocks. The energy and passion of Nevermore is present on this CD along with a goodly dose of Nevermore's technical merit. The mixture of keys and crunching guitar gives Symphorce a sound that stands head and shoulders above the normal power prog band. And wonder of wonders, they avoid the traditional Brotherhood of Metal Warriors cliches that plague a very large part of the melodic power prog on the market.

The CD is full of heavy, melodic music that is not afraid to push the bounds of aggression. The songs fit well together. The feeling of unity is so great, in fact, that the disc almost comes off as a concept album. Franck's aggressive singing fits this release far better than their debut disc. The vocal melodies and big catchy choruses are deftly woven into a complex backdrop giving the music a seamless feel. The sound is more comfortable in that it all fits together much better than that on the first Symphorce disc. The tracks are openly expansive, very expressive and manage to remain tight and complex.

This disc is a vast improvement on Truth to Promises and shows much promise for this band's future.

Review by Matthew Braymiller

Review date: 01/2001

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