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Not Your Average Prog Wankery - 85%

ReverseTracheotomy, December 7th, 2017

I must preface this by saying I'm a die hard metal fan, and anything core is unlikely to find itself a home in my music catalog. In particular anything core that could have the word progressive attached to it. To many bands in the scene today seem to resort to mindless guitar wankery and uninteresting, relentless sweep picking. And while Fallujah's roots are certainly cemented more in the core direction, I must confess I love this album and the band.The recording quality is incredible. As a guitar player I find their tones phenomenal. The cleans are crisp and beautiful, everything has been dialed in so perfectly. Now as for the music, I think that progressive bands can easily fall into the wanton wankery category of music, Dreamless is far from that.

Tracks like 'The Void Alone' 'Scar Queen' and 'Lacuna' showcase the talent of these musicians excellently. All of these guys are ridiculously technically proficient, but that only serves to further the music, not hinder it. The drumming on this album is truly incredible. The driving double bass is blazingly fast, and the guitar solos melodic and beautiful. The instrumental tracks as well such as 'Fidelio' and 'Wind for Wings' serve as a nice break for the album. Allowing for a peaceful atmosphere to build before shattering the calm with crushing guitars and thunderous bass lines. The combination of growls and clean vocals is well done, although my one critique would be that the cleans can seem a bit randomly distributed. On songs like 'The Prodigal Son' for example, my personal favorite track, I think it might have been better served as an instrumental. That being said it really doesn't interfere with the flow of the song or the album.

Overall I was extremely pleased by Dreamless. None of the tracks on the album were boring, they serve their purpose well, whether it be fast-paced, guitar driven brutality, or some of the more peaceful and melodic tracks on the album. Lyrically I have to admit I was confused. In an interview the singer stated that the album was based off of a movie and it was intended to be a puzzle to figure out. No clue what the hell the movie is. So with that said, Dreamless is a killer album. Very inventive, interesting, and original which is hard to come by in the progressive metal landscape today. Many bands seem to be taking the same direction, but I find Fallujah's use of clean guitar tones and more atmospheric sections fascinating and am excited for any further releases they might have.