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Ring of Fire: Lapse of Reality

In spite of its fantasy-laced covers and a history of sounding like a poor-man's Yngwie Malmsteen band – singer Mark Boals toured with the Swedish guitarist, after all – Ring of Fire's third album is surprisingly free of neoclassical indulgences. In fact, after 2003's sub-par concert disc, Burning Live in Tokyo 2002, I was expecting nothing less than a bloated studio effort full of sheer faster-than-ever nonsense. Instead, Boals and his band of musicians (which includes Tony MacAlpine on guitar and Virgil Donati on drums) have opted to root Lapse of Reality in various elements of progressive metal and hard rock that sound neither dated, forced nor clichéd.

Granted, Ring of Fire started moving away from its Malmsteen influences on its second album, Dreamtower. But now, instead of singing about pharaohs and oracles, Boals sings about everyday heroes and real life. The man's voice sounds better than ever, adding depth to the Dream Theater-like "Machine" and "One Little Mystery," which would be right at home on practically any Dio album.

There are still moments of fantasy-fueled excess on Lapse of Reality (namely "Darkfall" and "The Key"), and "That Kind of Man" is a dud with an awful chorus that sounds out of key and out of place. But overall, this is a major step toward granting Ring of Fire its own identity.

Track Listing:
1) Lapse of Reality (4:39)
2) Saint Fire (4:55)
3) Change (4:46)
4) That Kind of Man (4:58)
5) You Were There (5:25)
6) Perfect World (5:30)
7) Machine (4:29)
8) The Key (5:29)
9) Don't Know (What You're Talking About) (4:36)
10) One Little Mystery (5:35)
11) Darkfall (5:28)
12) Faithfully (6:51)
13) Lapse of Reality-Long Version (5:47) (Bonus Track)
Total Time: 68:44

Added: November 20th 2004
Reviewer: Michael Popke
Related Link: Frontiers Records
Hits: 4421
Language: english

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» Reader Comments:

Ring of Fire: Lapse of Reality
Posted by Carlos Canales Vega on 2007-06-28 12:06:27
My Score:

I agree. There is some filler and i must say that the first song should have been a fast paced one, not a mid tempo one.But all and all is still a good work.

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