Maybe it's the heat in the Southwest that accounts for Phoenix based metal band Fracture Point's intense and fericous brand of modern American metal. More likely, it's the fact this four piece is a solid and talented group of men who found their moment in time. They easily handle their genre with acumen and passion. Though, as most readers already know, I'm not a fan of current American metal trends and the ongoing downward spiral into less melody and more death/dirty vocals. I'd much rather be listening to Black Tide then, say, Lamb Of God or Cavalera Conspiracy. But Fracture Point is creative and innovative enough that they may stand the current trend on it's head (before kicking its ass, of course).
I'll get the vocal end of things out of the way first. Though I can live without the dirty vocals, Ben Rosputni can growl, roar and scream with the best and yet still show some depth in variation. If this is your thing, you will find Rosputni masterful. The better part of Fracture Point's is the scale of their music. All the nuances of modern American metal are there like the staccato drumming and crushing riffs. (In email correspondence, guitarist Matt Hobart admitted he works hard on his rhythm work and it shows). But on 'Inherit The Downfall' you will find more: like some traditional heavy metal guitar work ('Image'), and yes, even progressive metal moments ('Mind Ruin' and others). The rest is simply 'in your face, kick ass and ask questions later' modern American metal.
Let me note some exceptional moments on this work. If you want some impressive drumming listen to Dan Ammon on 'Mind Ruin,' 'Inherit The Downfall' and especially 'J69;' Amon truly shines on the last. Another, frightening and pleasing moment, is the guitar solo within 'Last Minute.' Why? On the first point, I'll give you five minutes to name five modern American metal bands that have a guitarist who can actually play a solo. If Fracture Point and Mr. Hobart actually keep this up, they will definitely cause turmoil in their genre. On the later point, it's damn good. Then when you think your brain has been hammered into a pulp, 'Last Minute' offers a brilliant piano outro. Even better, and again riding that progressive wave, is the interlude about three minutes into 'Failure State:' simply outstanding (more please!) Before ripping into some blazing metal, you've got to love the neo-traditional segue of 'Syntropy.' What follows is 'Manic Agression.' It lives up to its name. But there is something different here: it almost sounds like death metal crashing into power metal. Now that is a strange combination. And listen for Matt Bond's bass work; he excels on this track and the closing number. As for the final track 'J69,' it was totally unexpected, an instrumental sounding more like traditional metal with a progressive twist from beginning to end then any modern American metal. Again, more of this!
Fracture Point is like the 'Scarface' of current American metal. They come upon you like a rabid Al Pacino with a blazing semi-automatic. Fracture Point is full of fire and determination. Lovers of all things in the modern American metal genre should jump on these guys. I should expect to hear them blaring from car speakers in a high school parking lot. Though, again, their form of metal is not my first (possibly not even my second choice), Fracture Point definitely has a future and a hope. I would recommend easing off the dirty vocals and ramping up the progressive/melodic metal motif much like what Avenge Sevenfold and Atreyu have done recently. Otherwise, I'm afraid they may disappear into mainstream obscurity.
The bottomline is simply this: if you're a fan of modern American metal and you like intensity with progressive innovations, you must acquire Fracture Point's 'Inherit The Down Fall.' Frankly, though not loving the dirty vocals and certainly not all of their songs, Fracture Point has made me think twice about current trends in American heavy metal. I may be careful to listen to more of this in the future. Recommended!
- Craig Hartranft
Honestly, it took this reviewer a long time to get my ears around Fracture Point. It's modern American metal: all the traditional elements of this genre, including the dirty vocals, are here; certainly not my cup of metal. But these guys are passionate, and yes, very good at what they do. Fans of this current genre will love this. For the rest of us, listen carefully because Fracture Point easily explores some prog metal trends. And that is the one thing that kept me listening.
Resolve marks the return of Allentown's Mindmaze, after a three year hiatus from the studio. Their third album offers a new and stable line up with new drummer Mark Bennett assisting bassist Rich ... [ Read More ]