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From High Above

Review by Gary Hill

This French metal band takes its name from bassist and vocalist Fortunato. I've been trying to get this covered for a while, but I've had some trouble with it. The music is extremely powerful. The mix of power metal, technical and symphonic is pretty amazing. My issue is the vocals, which often miss the mark for me. I can tell you that, those kind of things have a habit of growing on a person, though, and they seem to be getting there with me. This is a powerful metal album with a lot of proggy leanings built into it. That says a lot, really.

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Track by Track Review
After The War
Operatic female vocals start this with some symphonic elements in the backdrop. A bass joins after a time and really begins driving it. Then the guitar joins and we're out into a killer metal jam. This is fast paced and strong. The lead vocals come over that arrangement. This has a real power metal vibe to it. The instrumental section later includes some killer keyboard work.
Evil Machine
Frantic and somewhat technical metal opens this. The cut gets into more of a power metal sound from there. This is not a big change, but it rocks like crazy. The guitar solo on this song is technical and soaring. It really elevates the track.
Just What We Have
This comes in similarly frantic and hard rocking. It drops back to some think that's more melodic and almost balladic for the entrance of the vocal. This has more of a power metal chorus, but the layers of sound over the top bring some definite symphonic vibes. The instrumental break later takes into prog metal zones. It has some pretty amazing guitar work. They turn into a frantic metal screamer from there. Another instrumental movement gets into more of that prog metal thing with stellar soloing both on guitar and keyboards.
My Sky At Night
This is very prog-oriented. I really love the bass work on it. It's also got plenty of driving metal in the mix, though. The instrumental break takes on almost mainstream rock texture for a while. It does turn more metallic as it continues, though.
Until My Last Breath
There is plenty of classical music and Latin sound built into this killer track. This is one of the most effective and compelling pieces here. It has some tasty guitar soloing, too.
If You Die
Dramatic and powerful metal with definite prog leanings is the idea here. This has a symphonic, power metal feeling to it. I'm reminded a little of acts like Royal Hunt on this.
Arise !
The Royal Hunt comparisons are appropriate here, too. This is very much a symphonic proggy metal-styled number. I love the bass work on this. There is a short break that is particularly symphonic. The guitar soloing on this track is especially potent.
Day After Day
Symphonic metal modes get us going here. This isn't a huge change, but it is another effective slab of music.
Storms Can Come
More of a mainstream metal sound is in the driver's seat here. This is another powerhouse tune. It drops to a mellower motif mid-track that features vocals over acoustic guitar. They drive out into a killer instrumental movement from there.   
Moment Of Weakness
Piano starts this with some classically styled sounds. That holds it for about 30 seconds. They take it out into a symphonically tinged metal jam from there that has both classical and world elements built into it. There is a more classically based break later that gives way to some killer keyboard soloing. A guitar solo follows in short order. It gets quite symphonic later, and then hits a crescendo. Then piano comes back in, to end it as it started.

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