Fortress review by Protest the Hero

logo Ultimate Guitar
  • Released: Jan 29, 2008
  • Sound: 10
  • Lyrics: 9
  • Overall Impression: 10
  • Reviewer's score: 9.7 Superb
  • Users' score: 9.8 (227 votes)
Protest the Hero: Fortress

Sound — 10
Back again for it's second attempt at full-length success, Canada's Protest The Hero released "Fortress" on Janurary 29th, 2008. Fortress was recorded at Silo Studios in Hamilton, Ontario and released on Vagrant Records. The band again pushes the limits of both the Progressive Metal and Metalcore genres, as well as stretches it's own abilities beyond expectation. The line up for the band has remained the same since it's creation, as with their first release "Kezia," on "Fortress" gifted guitarists Tim Millar and Luke Hoskin lead blazing verse and solo, backing the ever growing vocal ability of singer Rody Walker. Bringing in the percussion is drummer Moe Carlson, and finally bassist Arif Mirabdolbaghi shines as well. Fredonia Communications student Zach Meiling reguarded the new albums sound with this: "The bass guitar adds nice texture to the music, offering a strong complement to the lead guitars and vocals which have developed exponentially since their previous release." Each individual effort can be seen in several different songs as the band works together to create an album that will not likely be easy to rival in the genre. In an effort to make a stronger, more technical album, Protest The Hero strayed away from making marketable music and stuck to their own distinguished sound. "I feel it's a very natural progression for us," stated vocalist Rody to an interviewer from Vagrant records, "A natural progression into further obscurity. I am of the belief a lot of the people who work for us were hoping for a stab at a more commercially viable album, however we wrote what we wanted without linear boundaries and created something less commercial than ever." Unlike their past release, Fortress does not lyrically follow one single concept storyline, but instead focuses on "goddess worship in the tradition of Robert Graves," stated lyricist and bassist, Arif.

Lyrics — 9
The album contains 10 tracks total, broken in to two parts. Part one "On Conquest and Capture" is itself is broken in to two parts, part one containing tracks 1-3; Bloodmeat, The Dissentience, and Bone Marrow, while part two is tracks 4-7; Sequoia Throne, Palms Read, Limb From Limb- which hosts a guest keyboard solo from Vadim Pruzhanov of Dragonforce, and Spoils. Part two of the album is titled "Isosceles", and contains tracks 8-10; Wretch, Goddess Bound, and Goddess Gagged. Lyrically, Fortress is a monument to the writing ability of the band. On Conquest and Capture often lyrically brings about thoughts of war and conquering, like Bloodmeat's "Tomorrow we will find them, seek the youngest of their kin. We will meet them with our fury, and we will crush them all like vermin." Isosceles contrarily focuses on the worship and development of Gods, and how the development of civilization has lead to the downfall of true spirituality, as in Wretch's They impart a secret hatred from their fathers to their heirs Our Goddess gave birth to your God, and Goddess Bound's Take everything your school has taught you, throw it to the dogs.Its meat that dries in summer heat and reeks now of it's rot. It speaks now of the fate that we await, to be forgot.

Overall Impression — 10
In one package, Protest The Hero has raised the bar again for their distinct genre. Pushing the musical limits to new extremes, all members of the band shine through in their own ways, showing growth and potential that no fan or enthusiast could have expected. To those who may pass off the opportunity to listen, give the album a chance. Singer Rody says it best, with the comment to Vagrant Records: Some fans of the band will hate it. And some people who hate the band will love it. All others can rot.

12 comments sorted by best / new / date

    jpgilbert701 wrote: korbhag wrote: With BTBAM and PTH releasing such insanely amazing albums in the last couple of years, Dream Theater's next album has to be one hell of an album or else they won't be headlining their own Progressive Nation Tour for long +1 Colors owned and so does this album. I think instead of Three they should've brought these guys.
    Or just brought PTH as well? Seriously though, 3 is a great band. Also, Fortress is probably going to be my favorite album this year. I don't think These guys can write bad material
    inmytimeodying wrote: everyone thinks bone marrow isn't that great. it's wonderful, especially with the "dub" breakdown at the end.
    I think its awesome especially the piano bit at the end. "Protest The Hero is your typical progressive metalcore band with a hint of hardcore punk." -UG Team Thats a not a nice way to start an article about an album the UG Team says is good.
    This album is so ****in' awesome, the guitar riffs are amazing thoughout the whole CD crazy sweeps,taps all kinds of awesome licks though the whole thing. I could honestly say in my opinion Its a master piece. 10/10
    these guys are amazing, i just hope they can all stay healthy and out of trouble so we can get many more years of great music...
    Metalcore? They seem more like A Progressive Hardcore Thrash (sometimes) Metal not to compare them with acts like Atreyu.
    this cd is unbelieveable, definetly set the bar for albums in 2008, sequoia throne is the best song ive heard in a long time
    my fav band, there my musical heroes. not as complex as dillinger escape plan but still kick major ass. kinda like Kezia better, but this ones more metal! rock on.