Three (3) – Revisions (Metal Blade Records)

Sunday, 17th March 2013
Rating: 7.5/10

The trend of re-recording one’s old recordings is getting annoying and the results are never anything to go nuts about (see: Exodus, Arch Enemy, etc.), but for a band like 3, it’s a wise move. Criminally underrated in both the progressive rock and metal scenes (they’re not very metal, mind you), the band’s back catalog isn’t what one would call “readily available,” hence the need for Revisions.

A band that is both original and unique, 3’s sound relies heavily on the imitable vocals of singer/guitarist Joey Eppard, whose crystal-clear enunciations have this ethereal quality to them. “The Better Half of Me” and “Why” are proof of this, loaded with pop rock sensibilities, but stay in line with the band’s jangly, immediate prog stylings. Eppard (who is considered one of the better guitarists in prog circles) is even highlighted on “Lexicon of Extremism,” an all-instrumental jam that shows off the man’s crazed picking abilities.

There’s three major winners here (go figure) and they are opener “Anyone Human,” “Rabid Animals,” and “Automobile,” all of which rank alongside thetotally, totally mandatory The End is Just Begun album. Here, dreamy melodies (“Anyone Human”) and Eppard’s trademark guitar strumming (“Rabid Animals”) and a chorus worth guishing over (“Automobile”) exemplify what 3 is all about and when they’re on fire, they’re en fuego.

Revisions isn’t the proper starting point for 3 (go for The End is Just Begun and the rest will follow quite easily), but it’s more pleasurable listening from a band that gets put under the metal banner because of their label home. Mainstream success may forever elude these guys, but we’re more than happy to keep them for ourselves.

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