Of Legends Stranded

Of Legends Stranded
This is a commendable metal debut from electro musician Luis Dubuc (aka the Secret Handshake), whose previous work consists of Motown/electronic beat mash-ups. None of which thankfully leak through in Stranded. Co-managed by Ben Weinman of Dillinger Escape Plan, and Tim Smith (manager for Norma Jean, Atreyu), Of Legends, with their outstanding roster of support, deliver solid, no-nonsense hardcore. Travis Orbin of Periphery rounds out the team, delivering perfect drums, varying style and speed with ferocious intensity. Although resonating with well-paced breakdowns and volatile riffs ("Off Guard" comes to mind), Stranded teeters on the edge of redundancy, although not enough to overshadow its strengths. Dubuc's monosyllabic screaming is too pronounced, standing out provocatively, shrouding intricate instrumentals that deserve more attention. Moreover, his vocal range is limited, without enough range to match the music. Final track "The Last Leader" is the strongest, most poignant, concluding with Dubuc's resonating shriek, clearly sending a message that this kid's not screwing around. I'm looking forward to the remixed Smokie Robinson/"Cannibal King" mash-up. (Season of Mist)