"some music was meant to stay underground..."

Protest The Hero - "Fortress" (CD)

Protest The Hero - "Fortress" CD cover image

"Fortress" track listing:

1. Bloodmeat - 3:54
2. The Dissentience - 4:23
3. Bone Marrow - 5:30
4. Sequoia Throne - 3:11
5. Palms Read - 5:06
6. Limb from Limb - 4:22
7. Spoils - 3:43
8. Wretch - 4:12
9. Goddess Bound - 3:35
10. Goddess Gagged - 3:14

Reviewed by on March 18, 2008

"songs follow the same breakup, swimming through sub-genres every minute"

Protest The Hero released “Fortress” in Early 2008. The sound, this time, is not as unique as their previous effort, “Kezia.” Their type of music is different than many other bands in metal, mainly because they incorporate so many different elements and sub-genres in their stylistic approach. Power metal, thrash, progressive, and metalcore are all mixed together to make a sound that is unique to the market.

Although young, Protest the Hero has already completed two full-length albums with two different labels--a difficult feat on its own. “Fortress” is not only an intricate and complicated album, but it also breathes lyrics and stories themed with goddess worship. The complicated elements that bring “Fortress” together may not make it a great listen the first time around, mainly because it is too much to take in all at once.

The first single, “Bloodmeat,” opens the album with what you will expect on the forty-one-minute road to the “Fortress.” Its rhythm and beat changes over five times. The main riff is lost and found over and over. The other songs follow the same breakup, swimming through sub-genres every minute.

The flaws on the album go hand-in-hand with its perfectionist attitude. Because of its complexity, the album doesn’t follow the same flow or possess the breakdowns that major labels are spitting out all across the country. While it makes them unique, it also makes the album more of a “sit down and concentrate” rather than an “open your windows and blast” statement. However, after taking notice that these band members are less than 23 years of age and how much intricacy is placed onto every single track, I was in complete respect of this album.

Highs: Intricate, complex rhythms, melodic lyrics and vocals, and it's unique

Lows: may be too complex for it's own good

Bottom line: A respectable sophomore release from a sound completely unique to everything else.

Rated 3.5 out of 5 skulls
3.5 out of 5 skulls


Key
Rating Description
Rated 5 out of 5 skulls Perfection. (No discernable flaws; one of the reviewer's all-time favorites)
Rated 4.5 out of 5 skulls Near Perfection. (An instant classic with some minor imperfections)
Rated 4 out of 5 skulls Excellent. (An excellent effort worth picking up)
Rated 3.5 out of 5 skulls Good. (A good effort, worth checking out or picking up)
Rated 3 out of 5 skulls Decent. (A decent effort worth checking out if the style fits your tastes)
Rated 2.5 out of 5 skulls Average. (Nothing special; worth checking out if the style fits your taste)
Rated 2 out of 5 skulls Fair. (There is better metal out there)
< 2 skulls Pretty Bad. (Don't bother)