Alexander Santos must be feeling very proud of himself these days. Not only does he have a near-perfect debut album under his belt, but he has now delivered a worthwhile sequel titled It All Fades Away. If this is the first time you've read about Alexander and his solo project Scar for Life, you might want to check the reviews index for this writer's glowing review of his self-titled opus from 2009.
Having borne witness to the strength of the present material, it was easy to repay—yes, repay—the listening pleasure Alexander has given the world with a high score. Despite the obscurity of the underground music swamp (for it is very much a swamp), the man continues to forge ahead, carving out a beautiful niche for himself full of wondrous musicianship and expert songwriting. If you want rock that's progressive but not too far out, It All Fades Away is super recommended.
It All Fades Away launches itself to the starry heavens with the hammering crunch of down tuned guitars of My Darkest Journey where Alexander and a girl co-singer do an Evanesence meets the recent Kiske-Sommerville collaboration from AFM Records. My Darkest Journey is a decent slab of gothic rock that bands like Epica and Within Temptation have failed to deliver. The moment it climaxes with an abrupt ending, a raging speed metal ditty gets underway before a rocking anthem hooks you right in.
What's so endearing about Scar for Life is Alexander is comfortable with variety. The man's no peddler of a single formula and can flit between styles with an ease that's beyond most recording artist's talent. He's also an awesome guitarist and singer, though his vocals might be too Matchbox Twenty on occasion. It's bearable at worst.
Throughout IAFA you have mournful heartfelt ballads, musical pyrotechnics galore, epic two-part songs and no shortage of juicy hooks. By the time It All Fades Away wraps at Here Comes The Night, Alexander casts a farewell spell that leaves a bittersweet aftertaste. If you think the man's already hot shit now, wait for the next album. This writer likes to think if Alexander might someday want to dabble in music away from his main solo-project—what would this guy come up with if he decides joins a thrash band and writes all the songs? It will be different for sure, but totally kick ass as usual.
Alexander Santos must be feeling very proud of himself these days. Not only does he have a near-perfect debut album under his belt, but he has now delivered a worthwhile sequel titled It All Fades Away.