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WEBCounter by GOWEB    

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   SYMPHORCE
Twice Second
2004
Metal Blade
http://www.symphorce.net


rating: 5/5

1. Fallen
2. Tears
3. Whatever Hate Provides
4. Cause Of Laughter
5. In The Cold
6. Take What's Mine
7. Face Of Pain
8. Searching
9. Two Seconds To Live
10. Cry On My Shoulder

Over the years the "phorce" in Symphorce has become more dominant than the "symph" and Andy's love for the old Bay Area stuff or other legends of that era is shining through more and more. After some already awesome albums, I really hope the 4th output "Twice Second" is really gonna bring the band forward, because it's about damn time, they've been underrated for much too long. I never understood why Noise didn't seem to see much in "Sinctuary" and although "phorcefulAhead" and Metal Blade already opened some doors - "Twice Second" should be able to knock down dungeon-doors and castle-gates! It's a more coherent album, darker and in that dark way very passionate too. I know the musicians were all very psyched to make another killer record in this line up that we already saw at the last album (the best line-up to me, though I haven't seen any other live): next to chief Andy B. Franck (also Brainstorm), Dennis Wohlbold on bass (also Shades Of Grey) and Swiss cookie (or should I say chocolate) ;) Cede Dupont on guitar (also Freedom Call) there's drummer Sascha Sauer (also Fallen Angels) and guitarist Markus Pohl (also Valley's Eve). And if you've seen this bunch live this year, you know what a chemistry they all have together :)

Even though there's a lot of melody in the music, this is not an easy CD to digest at first, which is good. There is so much going on that it takes a few spins to hear all of its beauty, but once you do I guarantee you it will not leave your player for a long time :) To those who got to know Andy through Brainstorm and wonder how Symphorce is different, I first of all want to say that I believe if you love one band you'll love the other too. But Symphorce is more melodic (but still heavy riffing and shit!), sounds a bit groovier (the bass is more important) and has a more modern sound overall which refers to Nevermore sometimes. Brainstorm is a bit crunchier and thrashier. Of course Andy's voice brings them fairly close together, but otherwise it's a whole different set of musicians/composers.

After an unusual (very relaxing) intro of sounds of the sea and seaguls, the album starts with "Fallen" that already shows us there has come more depth in the songwriting and more layers in the music, it's a bit more progressive too. Sometimes I'm not really in the mood for the high-pitched end of Andy's vocals (he's pushing too much sometimes), but I gotta say it's exactly those vocals in the chorus of "Tears", supported by Dennis' groovy bass, that make this song so passionate. Lower vocals in the rest of the songs combine well with the higher ones in the chorus here. I believe it's one of the best tracks of the album, very very strong, heavy, groovy bass, original. The CD continues with "Whatever Hate Provides" that starts off very heavy (again a prominent role for the bass) and flows into a very enchanting slower part that's definitely in the same class as Nevermore! Actually the whole song is, and I'm sure this is gonna kill live! There's also a fucking brilliant riff in the middle that reminds me of the Powermad cover on "phorcefulAhead"! Roawk!! The song stops with a gunshot and "Cause Of Laughter" opens with another killer riff. It's pounding, thrashier, melodic but heavy with some rougher vocals and a great chorus - wanna sing along to that live as well! :) It also has a jumping (humpa ;)) kind of riff in the middle that I'm not too crazy about. Still, we just had three of my favorite songs of the album there (the fourth one is still to come). "In The Cold" is good, but doesn't knock my socks off like the songs before. Even though it has some ultraheavy riffs and all, maybe it's just because it comes right after "Cause Of Laughter" ;) "Take What's Mine" is slower and at first I thought it was a bit boring, but it also has some emotional and stronger parts. "Face Of Pain" is faster but followed by a slower "Searching". In "Two Seconds To Live" the music is pure adrenaline, the vocals somewhat catchy. This promo doesn't have a bonus track and ends with an incredible sensitive and loving song that Andy very likely wrote for his new-born son Yannick, who you can also hear crying later on in the song :) A very cool ballad to end "Twice Second" with.

Let's hope this record is really gonna make a difference and the metal crowd wakes up to this talented band. Go see them live! On tour with Grave Digger in January and damn, all this time I'm thinking, wouldn't this be a great band for ProgPower?! Europe, US, whatever..... any ProgPower! ;)

submitted by Mariles 10.01.2004

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