Vanishing Point
Tangled in Dream

The sticker affixed to the jewel case of the new Vanishing Point CD describes its contents as “Melodic Progressive Metal.” After several spins of this Australian sextet’s sophomore release Tangled In Dream, I can honestly say, “Yeah, that pretty much sums it up.” In smaller print the same sticker reads “…brilliant second album…” Excuse me, “brilliant?” I just can’t find the evidence to substantiate this claim. Good? Yes. Very good? Yes, in places. Brilliant? Hardly. Brilliant would be Dream Theater’s Awake, or Pain of Salvation’s Entropia, or better yet Genesis’ The Lamb Lies Down on Broadway. The word “brilliant” implies sounds and textures combined in such a way as to surprise and astound the listener, a work of sheer musical genius. What I find in Tangled in Dream is a solid offering of exactly what the first part of the sticker said. A collection of memorable melodies, progressive tendencies, and AOR influenced metal that most any fan of the genre should find enjoyable. However, “brilliant” is a bit too lofty a claim.

Vanishing Point, as I mentioned, are from Australia and, to my knowledge, the only band of its kind to hail from the lower continent. I have heard of more extreme forms of metal emerging from “down under” (I promised myself I wouldn’t say that…damn.), but none so melodic and smooth sounding as Vanishing Point. At first glance, one may be tempted to write them off as another in a long line of junior Dream Theater’s. But upon further investigation a skillful, seasoned band is uncovered. Vocalist Silvio Massaro has something of a unique timbre to his voice. I find it to be a little deeper than your average prog-metal singer. This is a welcome change from the high-pitched squealers that too often come as standard issue in this kind of band. He really does justice to the melodies here, without over-singing them. He simply puts in a good, well-rounded performance shining on songs like “Surreal,” “The Real You,” and “Closer Apart.” Guitarists Tom Vucur and Chris Porcianko, while not offering anything mind blowing or out of the ordinary, both turn in worthy performances. I especially enjoyed the acoustic guitars peppered throughout the record. Their rhythm playing is good, and their lead playing is skillful without overdoing it. They both can be proud of their work on this record. Remaining members Joe Del Mastro (bass), Jack Lukic (drums), and Danny Olding (keys) all pull their weight here. While they’re not likely to incite any obsessive hero-worship, they all get the job done with style and grace.

This is a band that is not afraid of taking a radio friendly melody and running with it. While most of the songs here are well over the 5-minute mark, they all contain catchy, singable melodies that hold their place in your head long after the CD is put back in its case. Highlights include “Surreal,” “Father (7 Years),” “Bring on the Rain,” “Dancing with the Devil” and the ‘hidden’ track, an energetic cover of Pink Floyd’s “On the Turning Away.” This is a band that, in time, could put out a “brilliant” album. Until then, Tangled in Dream is an album the band can be proud of, and they should be. If you’re a fan of the genre, pick it up. I doubt you’ll be disappointed.

[Visit the band's website]
Written by Shawn Pelata
December 12th, 2000


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