In early 2017, the mighty Judas Priest released the metal masterpiece “Firepower”. It immediately shot to the top of my top ten and remained there for the entire year. I have a strong feeling that “Age Of Fear” the new Storm Force album released January 25th on Escape Music is destined to achieve a similar fate. This album is damned near flawless.
I should probably apologize to the dozens of artists who have submitted albums in 2020. I haven’t had much time to listen to them yet because Age Of Fear has been stuck on repeat.
Storm Force, a new band with a familiar face. For those that don’t know Greg Fraser (Brighton Rock, Fraze Gang) has assembled a badass new rock n roll vehicle. Storm Force is comprised of vocalist Patrick Gagliardi, bassist Mike Berardelli, drummer Brian Hamilton with keyboards from Darius Szczepaniak.
Now Greg Fraser is no stranger to the Canadian Geeks, he is a big reason that our podcast even exists. When the Meister and I first hosted an episode of the Decibel Geek Podcast back in 2012, it was Greg that first suggested we start our own show. He claimed we had “chemistry” which only goes to show that Greg may just have a drinking problem. “Canadian Geeks?, should be Canadian Drunks!”, he is also the man responsible for our awesome Podcast intro every week.
Age Of Fear – Track by Track
Now on to the actual album at hand, Because Of You opens the album with a slow building keyboard crescendo into a big power chord / keyboard intro reminiscent of BR’s We Came To Rock. I would like to think this intentional. Greg saluting his other band before the song kicks in full gear. My eyebrows raised and I think I my exact words were “fuck yeah!” when this new vocalist spits Patrick Gagliardi is the real deal people! Because Of You is a perfect start.
Age Of Fear, the title track kicks in hard with a great melodic riff. Lyrically it dives into how today’s media manipulates the news promoting fear to keep us all in line. “Fake News” designed to direct the thoughts and actions of the masses. It holds up a mirror to our society and not everyone will want to see it. Lyrically my favourite song on the album.
Breathe – Words opens up with a mid tempo pulsating drum/bass riff that drives this moody, modern rocker. Patrick’s vocals light the fuse in the first verse before being joined by Serena Pryne when the chorus comes in. That’s when the song totally comes alive and takes off. It’s a beautiful, haunting and goose bump inducing track. Definitely the biggest surprise for me on the album
The first ballad, Ember Rain opens up with beautiful acoustic guitar riff. A quintessential power ballad with every box checked. Big chorus? Check! Tasty guitar solo? Check! If radio still paid any attention to rock, this could be a huge single.
On My Way To Dirty Vegas!!
Ride Like Hell and Dirty Vegas deliver a one two punch kick into full throttle hard rock. Ride Like Hell’s opening riff slightly reminiscent of Brighton Rock’s Nightstalker. A killer headbanger in all its whiplash glory. Followed up with my personal favourite track on the record, Dirty Vegas. You can almost feel the hangover that is coming your way. On my way to Dirty Vegas, let’s party!
More than You Know is one of the best rock ballads I have heard in years. A song of false pride, broken hearts and regret. Raw and emotional, simply a well crafted song from top to bottom.
Marshal Law, possibly the heaviest track on the record. Thumping fast riff rock at its finest. I absolutely love the addition of the tambourine. It adds the perfect accent to a killer rocker.
Different Roads, ballad number three opens with a piano piece. Some might say that three ballads are too many, but a good song is a good song. It might be my least favourite of the three but in no way does it not belong on the record.
The album closes out with a couple more rockers, Ringside and Weight Of The World. Lots of thick, chunky guitar riffs, more soaring vocals and a whole lot of fun. Greg’s signature guitar sound is all over this record, the songwriting is outstanding and Patrick’s vocals tears this record to shreds
Age Of Fear is quite simply a melodic rock masterpiece and it will take a juggernaut of a record to knock them from my top spot of 2020! Batten down the hatches, stock up on supplies (beer) because Storm Force rolls in as a category 5!
Official Website Storm Force
Facebook Storm Force
Label Escape Music