OK, I’m going to put it right out there, up front as they say.
I was never a big fan of Fury UK, to the indignation of some, they always seemed to lack that extra spark or edge for me that makes me sit up and take notice. Not that they were bad, on the contrary, Chris Appleton is a consummate axe man who was ably supported by his brother Luke on bass and Martin McNee on drums, but it all seemed too generic for me. So with Luke off to the slap the bass boards for Iced Earth a new project has been conceived. Sticking with McNee on the skins whilst drafting in Tom Atkinson (Vice) on guitar and Dan Bate (Point Blank Fury), Absolva was born. A new heavier beast, with teeth and claws to match.
Début album “Flames of Justice” was quick to hit the shelves, but there is no sign of cutting corners on production or quality. Concessions on what tracks made it? Maybe, but that’s for later, first up is a killer of an opening track.
“Flames of Justice” will see fans of Fury UK breath a sigh of relief. There’s still a strong element of the former outfit here, but on steroids. That extra guitar does it for me, it’s put meat on the bones. Fast, heavy, and full of the elements that fans of classic British Heavy Metal will love, combined with a technical Power Metal twist that will appeal to more discerning fans.
The majority of the album continues in a similar vein with tracks like “Hundred Years” and “Empire” displaying that classic rock/metal cross over, with some more melodic rock tracks such as “Only When It’s Over”, whilst stand out track is “Code Red”, a fast paced anthem that fans of Maiden and Priest will love.
All in all a solid first album, although the addition of instrumental track “State of Grace” in the middle is an acoustic anomaly for me, and “Free” kicks off ok, but at 7′ 30” long is two mins too long for my liking and feels out of place on this album.
The Fury UK fan club will breath a collective sigh of relief, there is a difference but not too much. Enough of a difference to convince new fans to gather at the Absolva table to feast on future offerings? I think so, they’ve convinced me after all!
8 out of 10
- Flames of Justice
- Hundred Tears
- Code Red
- It Is What It Is
- State Of Grace
- From Beyond The Light
- Love To Hate
- Only when It’s Over