Following on from 2012’s Acoustic EP ‘M.P.3: The Power Of Three’, Prong and Madonna axe-man Monte Pittman is due to unleash his third full length studio album, similarly titled ‘The Power of Three’ on Metal Blade Records in the UK on January 27th.
After a short, dark & brooding acoustic intro, the main riff of album opener and first single ‘A Dark Horse’ ferociously leaves the acoustic guitar in it’s wake and the huge riffs and melodic vocals take over the sound-waves for the next hour or so.
When I say huge riffs, I mean huge riffs, there’s not really a track on this album that doesn’t have some kind of memorable guitar part, like the main hook in Everything’s Undone, or the solo at the end of ‘Delusions of Grandeur’.
Video for the single ‘Before the Mourning Son’.
Second single ‘Before the Mourning Son’ is a real highlight, in which the 3-piece band seem to relish working as a unit. Max Whipple’s bass tones come in low and menacing, at times matching note for note anything Pittman is playing on the guitar, while Kane Richotte’s drums hammer the song home with the double kick pedal working overtime in parts
‘End of the World’ notes the only real change in pace on the record, but this is really just the calm before the epic album closer ‘All Is Fair in Love and War’ which features guest guitar from Alex Skolnick (Testament) and vocals from Chris Barnes (ex-Cannibal Corpse). Barnes’ vocals are the only real departure from Pittman’s melodic vocal stylings, and without sounding out-of-place offer something guttural and profoundly angrier than anything else on this record.
My first impressions were that this is a real guitar lover’s record. That’s not to say this is a guitar-twiddling opus as you would get from the likes of Vai or Malmstein, but rather something slightly darker and heavier, there’s a real intelligence behind the songs and their arrangements. This is just full of catchy hooks and huge riffs, to get feet stomping and heads banging.
If this is Pittman’s return to his metal roots, long may he stick to those roots, for this is a metal album of the highest quality and I will watch with interest to see what he does next.
Monte Pitman: Guitar & Vocals
Kane Ritchotte: Drums
Max Whipple: Bass
“The Power Of Three” track listing:
1. A Dark Horse
2. Delusions of Grandeur
3. Everything’s Undone
4. Blood Hungry Thirst
5. On My Mind
6. Away From Here
7. Before the Mourning Son
8. End of the World
10. All is Fair in Live and War