SOTO – Inside The Vertigo (Review)
Jan 30 2015
SOTO is the new band and vision of vocalist Jeff Scott Soto. The band takes a far more ‘metal’ stance than Jeff’s more ‘melodic rock’ based solo efforts. Jeff says ”I’ve been in the game for a long time but my roots started more on the heavier side of the tracks, I thought it was about time I came home to visit the family and stick around for a while!”
The band SOTO consists of individuals from the US, Europe and South America, namely Jorge Salan (lead guitar), BJ (keys, guitars), David Z (bass) and Edu Cominato (drums), though the album is scattered with appearances from other notable names such as Gus G (Firewind, Ozzy), Mike Orlando (Adrenaline Mob), Joel Hoekstra (Night Ranger/TSO) and Jason Bieler (Saigon Kick) who all co-wrote tracks on the album.
From the off there is no mistaking this is heavy stuff though I wouldn’t go as far as to describe this as ‘power metal’ as the band do on their own site, this is still very melodic in essence. Opening track “Final Say” penned by Mike Orlando starts proceedings with a great riff and a thumping rhythm. “The Fall” continues things with an anthemic chorus and “Wrath” written by Gus G continues the common theme of bullying layed down by the first two tracks.
“Break” treats us to a catchy melodic chorus before “Narcissistically Yours” kicks things up a gear again.
The midway point of the album brings us “End of Days“, something of an epic at almost 9 mins in length and is the most progressive and diverse track on the album with choir and orchestral elements.
The title track “Inside The Vertigo” co-written with old friend Gary Schutt has a slow and driving rhythm while “When I’m older” is probably one of the more melodic tracks on offer and the closest thing to a ballad (and Jeff’s solo work) but still packs plenty of power. “Trance” cranks up the power again and “Jealousy” continues with a chugging guitar riff and catchy chorus.
Up next is “Kharma’s Kiss” with another driving rhythm before the albums closing track “Fail to Pieces” which is more up tempo affair and maybe one of the tracks which would have been equally at home on one of Jeff’s solo efforts.
I’ll be honest, the change in direction, though expected, took me by surprise a little and it took me a couple of spins to really start to appreciate the album. I’m really interested to see the reaction to this release from long time Jeff Scot Soto fans. The change in direction will inevitably be too heavy for some but I’m sure will equally attract new blood to the fold.
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