Released: 2004, Frontiers Records/Atenzia Records
Reviewer: Anders Sandvall
Ring Of Fire is the band Mark Boals formed in 2000 when Mark after departing from Yngqie Malmsteen’s band. Ring of Fire combines melodic metal/neo-classical metal with fantasy based lyrics and incredibly technical musicians. The band’s debut album was self titled and the follow up was called DREAMTOWER. The band has also released a live CD/DVD by the name of BURNING LIVE IN TOKYO. The accompanying bio I was sent describes this as symphonic hard rock. In my opinion this is rather melodic metal or hard rock combined with neo-classical metal.
Boals, Virgil Donati (drums) and Tony MacAlpine (guitar) wrote the lyrics to all twelve tracks. Boals produced the album together with the band, but it seems like he is the main producer. He has done a pretty good job as a producer and it sounds like it should when it comes to this genre of music. Boals has left a lot of space in the soundscape for his vocals, but there is plenty of space left for the other guys as well.
The album cover looks very appealing and it seems like they have really done the best they could with it. It’s fantasy based just like the lyrics and it reflects what the music is all about.
LAPSE OF REALITY sounds really good and there is nothing major to complain about on this album. If you are into this genre of music I really think that you should check this out. If you are a fan of Boals you definitely won’t be disappointed with Ring Of Fire.
In short, this album is well produced, features high quality musicians, a star singer and sharp material. The only minor thing is that there are a few songs that they should have left behind. Ten songs would have been just right. Also, even though Boals is one of the better singers out there, he should really stick to what his vocal range can manage. He has a tendency to sound a bit too screamish when he takes on the higher notes.
Killer tracks are “Lapse Of Reality”, “Change”, “That Kind Of Man”, “Machine”, “The Key” and “Don’t Know”.