Prey On The Fallen
PREY ON THE FALLEN
There's something to be said about persistence. Prey On The Fallen have been blowing up my email and Facebook for a few months to get me to review their CD. That's usually a formula for an instant discard of their music to be honest, but these guys did it with a politeness that's refreshing. The reality is that I've been buried in other projects, which is the only reason I didn't get to this one sooner. PREY ON THE FALLEN is not a release that will reinvent the wheel by any stretch of the imagination, but if you are into chugging heavy metal with touches of 80s flair in it, then these guys will probably keep you very well entertained.
While they created a new subgenre of metal from which to be classified as, Prey On The Fallen certainly have created a solid collection of tunes that will likely entertain fans of traditional, powerful metal with an 80s tinge to it. Guitarists Mark Bouras and Daryl Hernandez clearly are fans of both old school metal and a lot of the more modern stuff (think Disturbed as far as the rhythms they provide). The infusion of these two styles works well on a lot of this material. The riffs on songs like "Sherman's March" feels like what you would expect a tornado to as it engulfs a house. It's this swirling feeling of power which drives the song, followed by a very modern chug riff that just rocks. From a guitar standpoint, Prey On The Fallen are have a cool sound. It would be cool to hear the production on their guitars be a bit more full, but that will probably come with experience. They have a great foundation to play from as well, as the team of Mike Ikona (drums) and John Guy (bass) lay down a thick floor for the guitarists to launch from on songs like "Present Time".
Vocally, singer Kurt Loun is one of those guys that will almost certainly be hit or miss for most metalheads, if only because he has a lot of dimensions to his voice. Loun is a bit of a growler, but seems to have upper range that would make anyone from fans of Twister Sister to traditional power metal proud. In a way, it's kind of like if you took Symphony X's Russell Allen's growling lower end and gave it a dose of Dee Snider's screams to flesh it out. Sometimes it works, and sometimes it doesn't. Personally, I'm not a fan of the lower end vocals on songs like "Chain Reaction" (which is otherwise a cool song that reminds me a lot of White Zombie's "Thunderkiss '65"), although I do like the higher end that dominates "Complete Hypocrisy". Still at other times, like on "Creed To The Greed", he has a texture to his voice that reminds a lot of Mandy Lion. Overall, Loun has an appealing sound.
There is one major criticism of this release though. That's their metaled up cover of "Hotel California". While it's easy to praise the attempt to take something completely un-metal and give it a heavy facelift, this just wasn't the song. I don't think I could have hated this cover more if the band was a pedophile and the riff was a 5 year old. No offense to the band, but this was REALLY tough to get through.
PITRIFF RATING - 81/100 - Take out the "Hotel California" cover, and this is probably closer to a 90/100 rating. Prey On The Fallen are a cool band with a lot of talent, some good skills, and a vocalist that is almost certain to be a bit polarizing. This is a cool band that will only get better with some time and experience. They are off to a good start.