Saturday, January 19, 2013


After a 7 year absence Rivera Bomma have returned with a brand new album entitled Infinite Journey of Souls. Retroactive Records is the purveyor of this ten track album which offers the listener an excursion into a journey of melodically progressive heavy metal, with a bent toward the commercial. Commercial in the sense of melody but not in 'softness,' just to make sure that is clear.

The songs themselves are for the most part immediately accessible. Not only are the accessible but they are MEMORABLE! An element that many songwriting seem to forget these days. The lead ‘single’ Empty Desire is a melodic masterpiece of metallic whimsy that just grabs you. It grabbed me, the guitar parts scream and it all just flows together, like a fine oil painting. The title track is a full heavy metal assault that twists and turns without losing steam, strap in and hold on. Johnny Bomma’s vocal is strong and powerful.

In Blood is a barnburner that drives full speed ahead, with such a tasty hook that I almost never saw it coming until it grabbed me. Nice song dynamics that really push this song over the top, clocking in at over 7 minutes this track is a journey but doesn’t feel at all like a 7 minute tune. Via Dolorosa is a cover of the old Sandi Patti tune, a power ballad that takes a right turn musically. This track is completely unexpected, a good rendition that is worthy of its place on this album.

Angels and Demons bring back the metal in a strong way. Horizons End takes the intensity back up a notch with Rod Rivera’s guitar histrionics shinning through out, a nice harmony with bass player Mike LePond is a solid plus.  This track rocks make no mistake about it. The musicianship is of extremely high caliber that is worthy of international notice. LePond (Symphony X) offers the bass assault while Edward Faust pounds away on the drums.

Infinite Journey of Souls is a great album musically; I found myself air guitaring often and wanting to reply many of the tracks again and again. The melodies were infectious, yet the one thing that seems to hold the album back from being a classic is the production. The sound is so compressed; the instruments aren’t given space to breath and find their own home in the mix. The drums lack stereo separation, it’s almost like they’re in this center grove sonically that they need to break out of! Because of this the bass guitar and drums seem to be at the bottom of the valley, almost like the reverb button was on overdrive attempting a big sound that has swallowed up some of the stellar musicianship.

Infinite Journey of Souls is great album of melodically inspired heavy metal with strong progressive leanings. The songs are FAB and you can’t go wrong with Rivera’s guitar work. The production short comings shouldn’t prevent anyone from enjoying the songs themselves. 8 axes and here’s hoping we don’t have to weight so long for another release. 

8 axes
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