Wednesday, October 26, 2016

Existance - Breaking The Rock (2016)

Right before October hit, I was on a big Sonic kick, which included going through a lot of the Sonic Adventure series and digging into Crush 40's music. Well, Crush 40 (which actually contains Hardline/Axel Rudi Pell frontman Johnny Gioeli – Yes, the frontman of Axel Rudi Pell has been singing about Sonic The Hedgehog for a number of years now, and that looks to continue) is inspired by many of the same bands that this French classic heavy metal act is also inspired by on their sophomore album (Priest, Maiden, Saxon, Accept, exc) and that equals out to a winning record for me. As you know, I've always been a fan of classic heavy metal in this vein, which Existance manages to translate pretty well into the modern era. It sounds like it came straight from the eighties golden age, with Juian Izard (son of H-Bomb frontman Didier Izard) wailing on the vocals along with Antoine Poiret shredding up a storm on guitars. Newly added to the act are the punchy drum acrobatics of Nicholas Martineau on the kit and the thumping riffs of Julien Robilliard on the bass. The listener is hit with track after track of what I can simply just describe as the chemistry of heavy metal in general.

Breaking The Rock features explosive guitar solos, catchy choruses and just plain strong leads in general. I hear a lot of discs like this, but these guys are putting more muscle into than I get with several similar acts. It's also the attention to detail in their bridges that really hits me – I like a song that offers more than just a verse, chorus and solo piece and if you'll really give it a listen, you'll understand exactly what I'm talking about there. Most of these cuts are also a bit longer than the normal three minute mark, which usually means that there's a bit more in terms of song structure and that equals out to a memorable experience that delivers far more than just a simple chorus line repeated from now to eternity.

“Sinner Of Love” actually gives the band a full five minutes to play with, which are quickly filled with the kind of classic solo indentation that we want from what is very much a classic hard rocker. “In The Name Of Revenge” truly soars, with Izard packing a truly notable vocal performance on what I'd consider to be a much heavier cut, and even though it's a bit shorter than the others, we are still treated to a truly awesome solo. That's just the kind of material that listeners will be presented with on this return to the eighties glory days of the metal genre. If you love classic heavy metal fused with hairy hard rock, then you're going to enjoy this one quite a bit. It's no secret that The Grim Lord loves this classic stuff and I'd definitely recommend checking out this effort from the Frenchmen, even if not all the vocal nodes caught with me as much as I wanted. The effort is there though and that's what truly counts in the end. Existance seem to prove that they should very much exist as a heavy metal entity and I'm sure you'll love them if you'll give them a chance.

(10 Tracks, 46:00)


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