CD REVIEW: Final Voyage - "Final Voyage"
By: Cyrus Rhodes
"One hell of a ride"
- INDIE MUSIC DIGEST:-
Artist: Final Voyage
CD: Final Voyage
Label: Independent Artist
Genre: Classic Hair Metal, 80’s Progressive Rock, Hard Rock
Sounds Like: Ratt, Poison, Night Ranger, Ozzy
Technical Grade: 7/10
Production/Musicianship Grade: 7/10
Weakness: Dated sound, Mix, Marketability
Fairfax Virginia 2 piece musical project Final Voyage releases their self titled CD in 2010. Band members include Shawn Jennette (guitars, lead guitars, vocals) & Marc Maioocra (Drums & Vocals)
The CD kicks off into high gear with “Truth” a hard hitting, full tilt guitar groove against emotionally charged vocals, & hooky chorus. Track 2 “All You’ll ever Need” serves up another rocking low end groove, with hard rocking musical flow coupled with hooky vocal accents. Track 3 “Water Edge” keeps things moving in the right direction with its pulsating rock groove meshed with an infectious vocal melody that flows & ebbs its way through emotional fruition. The CD makes a solid first impression dishing out 3 consistent songs in a row. As the CD unfolds I can hear many musical influences reminiscent of classic hair metal acts like Ratt, Night Ranger & even brief splashes of Poison & Ozzy. Right from the start you will notice Maioocra & company feel quite comfortable just letting it all hang out musically, not holding anything back, & just being themselves. The overall musical vibe has a flair reminiscent of classic 80’s Hair Metal that once ruled the airways with reckless abandon in the late 80’s, early 90’s – taking no prisoners The guitar playing from Shawn Jennette is hot to the touch delivering solo guitar work that will break the sound barrier. If I was a betting man he probably uses the same equipment Robbin Crosby & Warren DeMartini did. Equally as impressive is the drumming from Marc Maiorca as he pushes the natural accents extremely well, delivering a solid low end grooves song for song – reminds me a lot of Bobby Blotzer. Both players share the singing duties & both clearly make the (singer to listener) vocal connection. The songs themselves are short & sweet musical experiences, each one possessing unique personality, flair, & signature groove. From dynamic “Water Edge” to striking “Shifting Tides” to rocking “Take a Ride” to upbeat “Fall Away” & “Comin Around” this CD pretty much has something for just about everyone. A few songs literally let it all hang out like my personal favorite “Keeper of the Sign” the final track.
Though I enjoy the rocked out sound – it’s fair to say the overall production comes across as a bit dated. I’m also not crazy how the vocals sit within the mix. To me they just sound overly saturated & buried by the other instruments within the sonic space. Perhaps the mix is a bit dated. If the year was 1980 this would be a cutting edge musical production no doubt. Unfortunately the year is 2011 & the bar is set really high for artists like Final Voyage with respect to modern recording, mixing & mastering techniques. I am well aware that this is a subjective art for but all of the above does affect the productions overall marketability. It just sounds extremely dated with mixing that comes across as sounding somewhat amateurish in nature.
From start to finish Final Voyage is one hell of a ride. The strong suit is clearly the guitar showmanship, & overall musical consistency of the music & playing. This CD will be a joy for guitar enthusiasts out there who enjoy technically savvy guitar, shredding solos, & a classic 80’s late 90’s rock vibe. So if you like your guitar served up hot to the touch, with solos that are fast and furious, with music that will remind you of an out of control Hair Metal party that once ruled the neighborhood, then Final Voyage belongs in your hands right now.
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