Hard rock and classical music might seem less than apparent bed-fellows, but they have more in common than you think. Both deal in the atmosphere and anticipation, grandeur and grace, hit soaring crescendoes, and explore dynamic lulls. Both operate on a grand scale. And, as this new album from Fist of Five proves, if done correctly, the two genres can be a marriage made in heaven.

Right from the opener, The Dance, we hear squalling guitars working with mournful piano and symphonic structures being dove-tailed into rock forms. And if acoustic-driven Can’t Be Over shows us the more balladic side of the band, it is that opening salvo which sets the tone for what the album is more concerned with. The title track is a slow-burning build, ebbing and flowing between an understated rock and epic classical sweeps. Can You Hear Me is spacious and poised, allowing the under-pinning piano equal time in the spot light, and Farewell My Friend is truly anthemic, dark and delicious.

It’s a perfect blend, proving that rock music can be down and dirty and yet shimmer with class and sophistication. Who knew? Well, Fist of Five for a start!

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