A couple of months ago we reviewed Ascension by Perceptions of Fate aka Frank Summa. If you happened to catch that review and listened to the music you would know that the album was an instrumentally based metal album that revolved around the guitar. Summa recently released Last Theater that, while is still founded in metal, is also a huge departure in one way. He’s singing.
The focal center of the music now revolves around his voice rather than his guitar. For his fans that appreciated his guitar skills, don’t worry there is still plenty of that. Just not as much as on Ascension.
Summa’s vocals are wet with effects like chorus or reverb. I normally don’t like too much modulation on vocals but in this case it worked out well. That being said I wouldn’t have understood most of his vocals if it weren't for the lyrics on Bandcamp.
The album starts with “Day and Night,” which has shades of Black Sabbath and progressive metal. It’s one of Summa’s most subtle and subdued songs. It’s more atmospheric then anything you heard on Ascension. Lyrically, Summa sticks to themes that occurred in metal since it’s inception. He sings, “We rise, out of darkness feed from all pain scream, but come closer stay aside Archangel, dethroned.”
“Devistation” has some classic metal sounds while also building upon ascending, cascading guitar riffs. The song was one of the highlights amongst the seven. “Elestial” goes in and out of phase while the mixing of different vocal lines makes Summa sounds like a respawned demon on “Pain.”
The album closes with one of his most epic songs entitled “Forever Under.” The six-plus-minute isn’t a deviation from anything else on the album but happens to be quite epic. Summa’s one weakness is still the quality of recording. It’s not bad but it’s also not great. To be specific some of the problems are within the low-end. There are too many frequencies competing for space there, which end up masking the mid and high frequencies from the guitar.
Overall, Last Theater was about as enjoyable as Ascension. Summa’s endeavor and transition into vocal based songs feel seamless. That being said I hope he doesn’t fully give up on his instrumental music.
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