Furyon – Gravitas
Frontiers Records – 2012
This is the most exciting new band I’ve heard in a long time. Imagine a touch of Alice In Chains mixed with the guitar power of Black Label Society, topped by the vocals of Audioslave.
The band establishes a commercial sound in “Disappear Again.” The guitars bite and work together to energize the tune. Matt Mitchell’s voice will immediately catch your attention and make you think of Chris Cornell (click to read my interview with Mitchell). Chris Green and Pat Heath exchange blistering guitar solos that will have you smiling from ear to ear.
Primal drums lead to the guitars bulldozing a path for Mitchell to sing “Stand Like Stone.” The guitar parts, including the rhythm are intricate and played with awe-inspiring skill.
When the band slows down in “Souvenirs” it’s only for a few moments before guitars hit the throttle to blast into dazzling guitar patterns. The fast picking guitar embellishment is just plain wicked. Alex “Nickel” Bowen’s bass and Lee Farmery’s drums are felt big time in this song. The heavy guitar rhythm after the three and a half minute mark is vicious. This is a rock band pushing the envelope of commercial heavy metal, progressive metal while at the same time retaining a foothold in classic rock.
A good analogy for the music of “Don’t Follow” would be BLS with a little more commercial slant and that awesome voice of Matt Mitchell.
“New Way of Living” has a classic acoustic guitar intro before the guitars smash in like a wrecking ball. Mitchell is sensational vocalizing this tune. The guitar solo in this fifth cut gives me goose bumps and has to be the best constructed solo I’ve heard recently. I like how the drums switch tempo over the considerable length of time Green and Heath have to make their instruments scream and shred.
Damn this BAND ROCKS! The guitar rhythm in “Voodoo Me” is not for the faint hearted. Mitchell and his band friggin’ nail this tune! The mixture of hard charging guitars, drums, bass and Mitchell’s voice hit this song completely out of the park.
In “Fear Alone” little distorted guitars feedback their way to a dark acoustic guitar and finally crushing riff that thunders like Zakk Wylde playing Led Zeppelin. The guitar embellishment before the solo is really fascinating. Matt Mitchell is so fluid on the vocals that you might take for granted what he accomplishes on a track by track basis.
Green & Heath’s guitars work up “Wasted on You” before Matt Mitchell sings what might be his best performance on this entire Tour De Force of an album. This comes from his voice bringing a toughness to match the band’s aggression. His vocals soar into the high and low parts of the sound registry. Bowen’s bass and Farmery’s drums are critically important to the many time changes and shifting musical movement.
“Our Peace Someday” is an excellent song that reminds me a tiny bit of Tesla.
“Desert Suicide” is an 8-minute epic that is moody, big-riffed and superbly sung. There is a little Led Zeppelin influence but as if that band was operating on Nitromethane.
Gravitas is a jaw dropping debut that every single sub-genre enthusiast of hard rock or heavy metal would enjoy. Each member of Furyon performs on a world-class level, with the band placing the highest importance on the songs. Gravitas easily garners a 10 out of 10 rating.
Don’t hesitate to pull the trigger on buying this CD.