I Am I — Event Horizon (Own Label)

Well crafted melodic metal featuring ex-Dragonforce vocalist...Guitar Hero difficulty level: Medium.
Release Date: 
28 May 2012 (All day)

After his abrupt departure from Dragonforce nearly one year ago, ZP Theart [pronounced: ˈzi-pē] returns to the scene with I Am I, a brand new band and a fresh batch of focused melodic metal tunes that eschew any similarities to his previous project. Gone are the hyper-speed, nintendo inspired guitar solos, fantasy lyrics, keyboard patch-prancing, and little Asian men jumping on trampolines...not that there's anything wrong with all of that. But, if you've spent almost a decade being identified with — whether you like it, or not — the most succesful power-metal band currently on the scene, you may want to create something that doesn't have to compete with your legacy. 

Enter I Am I's Event Horizon. Produced by ZP with guitarist Jacob Ziemba and mixed by Roland Grapow (Helloween), Event Horizon is an album where modern production meets 80s metal sensibilities while nimbly crossing over into AOR/hard rock territory. 

The album opens with This Is My Life, an uptempo rocker about self-empowerment that's much more enjoyable than enduring a Tony Robbins seminar. This is followed by the hook-ladened single Silent Genocide, and the key word here is 'hooks'. The album's full of them. Don't be surprised if you find yourself humming the choruses long after the last song fades out, particularly on the track Cross The Line. The lone ballad, King In Ruins brings a pleasant lull at the halfway point and is a good vehicle to showcase an emotive side of ZP's voice that might not have been fully realized while in Dragonforce. 

The rest of the album keeps a rocking pace closing out with Pave The Way, with a great classic sounding riff that's reminiscent of W.A.S.P or Pretty Maids. While the music isn't as over-the-top as Dragonforce, it makes up for that by dialing up the crunch several notches and delivers a more swaggery rock feel. The concise, chunky stoccatto riffs allow the songs to breath, letting  ZP do what he does best, which is deliver soaring emotional vocals and memorable hooks. Fans that are only expecting the flamboyancy and extreme shred that caused kids to burst into flames while playing Guitar Hero are going to be marginalized a bit, however, it won't be long before word of this release spreads and creates a buzz among the melodic rock/metal community. This is a solid debut.