Review – Final Blast: In the Course of Time

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  • Bio: "Final Blast was created by guitarist Luke Robinson who started writing material for his symphonic metal project in early 2014." - Facebook
  • Label: Self-release
  • Release Date: December 29th, 2015
  • Genre: Death Metal, Symphonic/Progressive Power Metal
  • Website: Visit Website
  • Rating (out of 10):

Final Blast is a three-piece symphonic power metal/death metal act from the UK. According to their official Facebook account, the band “started in October 23”, presumably of this year given that’s also the earliest post on the page’s timeline, though this is just a rough guess. Either way, it’s been a little over two months from that assumed date, and we are given their independently released seven song debut album, In the Course of Time. But is this something mildly impressive, or is it just something rushed to make it out before the end of the year?

In the Course of Time blends together many traditional and symphonic power metal bands like Lost Horizon and Sonata Arctica for subtle, often crafting captivating atmospheres that utilize some symphonic tendencies. You can even pick up on some Powerslave-era Iron Maiden from time to time. There’s also that hint of Children of Bodom harshness available, such as during “Beautiful Side of Hate”, though not enough to call it a cheap knock-off by any real stretch of the mind. Final Blast still brings in a large sense of originality through it’s majestic landscapes, slow moving or otherwise, and their fairly aggressive side with raspy vocals a bit too distant to really be heard properly.

The only major downfall outside those too distant rasps are the clean vocals. Sadly, these are pretty rough to sit through with how weak, even off key at times with the tone of the music itself. This is glaringly apparent during the start of “Afterlife” and its somewhat western style emptiness and dual singing start that feels cold, but also a bit too cheesy to be that effective. The falsettos, however, are a fantastic addition, as are some of the gang chants that appear from time to time, such as during the track “UnEarth”. Both of those latter aspects usher in a hint of thrash that nicely adds to the overall originality of the album.

Of course, you can always judge for yourself since you can also stream the entire album on their Bandcamp page [or above]. In the Course of Time may be a little rough in the vocal department but, musically, the band easily drives the point home with almost every performance. Regardless of how quickly it was created, this is a highly impressive debut outing that could do with a better mastering, not to mention just a tighter prodution quality all around. But, at the asking price of free at the very least, this is better than most of the recordings available on Bandcamp and other digital music marketplaces that ask for a couple of dollars minimum. So, if you have the time, check out Final Blast‘s debut, as there’s definitely something special here.

Final Blast

Digital review copy of this release provided by personal funds.