review by Stanley Sievers
This is the second guest review from Dead Icons’ bassist, Stanley Stivers. Check them out on facebook and give ‘em a like because they rule. NOW READ.
Here we have the newest album from progressive rock band OSI entitled ”Fire Make Thunder” which has been released on Metal Blade records. The band is comprised of Jim Matheos (Fates Warning, Arch/Matheos) and Kevin Moore (Chroma Key, former Dream Theater keyboardist) who write and record the songs by themselves and then send them back and forth to hammer out the details. “Fire Maker Thunder” was produced by both members of the band and boasts mastering efforts by renowned engineer Roger Siebel.
First, let me start by saying I believe I have heard this record before. Perhaps it was some time in an alternate universe or in some distant future where it is the soundtrack to my own Blade Runner, Mad Max-esque science fiction movie. This record makes me feel like I am walking along a desolate plane of some post apocalyptic world where I am the protagonist and at any minute I might encounter some sort of beast or machine intent on taking my life, and I like it. The music is at times as aggressive as the alien cyborg chasing you through an irradiated forest, yet at other times as docile as the maiden whose life you save with fifteen minutes left in the movie- inevitably allowing you to “get the girl” and live out the rest of your days in happiness. The reason I mention these things is because OSI seamlessly makes the transition from distorted bad ass and driving guitar leads into compassionate and cerebral “soft” parts much like you would hear in scenes of the same movie.
Much like a movie “Fire Make Thunder” starts off relatively slow with the beginning of “Cold Call” until the first bit of action kicks in out of nowhere with the main guitar riff, catching your attention and dragging you in. Along with “Cold Call” other stand out tracks are ”Enemy Prayer” with it’s driving rock guitar riffs and crisp leads, and “For Nothing” for which the band has a music video that is pretty damn cool if I must say so myself. If “Fire Maker Thunder” were a science fiction movie “Big Chief II” would be the climax with “For Nothing” following as the cerebral and emotional thought provoking scene. Also at some point I am guessing Steven Seagal or Dolph Lundgren would make an appearance if they weren’t already main characters.
That being said, the draw back to albums like these is that they are usually not very interesting to people who haven’t already developed an ear for the music already. I do have to say that I already listen to a few bands similar to this and it still took me a few listens to really get a feel for the album. It doesn’t have much in the way of ”catchy” songs (to the basic music fan) but at the same time it’s not supposed to. Albums like these are mean’t to listen to as a whole, and some people just don’t understand that concept causing them to toss it aside easily. Like I said, there are definitely stand out tracks but to anyone who isn’t already familiar with this music they might get bored easily since most of the tracks sound the same or have similar patterns. However, that’s not to say that the music is bad by any means. It’s just all a matter of preference. For anyone who enjoys progressive rock, this is definitely an album you will enjoy as well. If you are looking for the new “hit single” this isn’t the album for you, but you should still check it out and try something new because I did and I enjoyed this album.