• 9.5/10
    DEADRISEN - DeadRisen - 9.5/10


AFM Records
Release date: March 13, 2020

User Review
0/10 (0 votes)

DeadRisen is the new project by Rivera/Bomma guitarist Rod Rivera and Symphony X bassist Mike LePond. As the group professes, “DeadRisen is an explosive cocktail of older musicians with young new school guys.” Rounding out their ranks is Tony Stahl of Livesay on keys, Dan Prestup of Midnight Eternal on drums, and Will Shaw of Heir Apparent on lead vocals.

The grandiose opening instrumental “Risen Death AD” starts the album off like the beginning of an epic movie. Brass and woodwinds always have a way of building up excitement. “Prophecy” takes over the show with punishing double kick drums and charging guitars. The addition of Stahl’s keyboards injects a little softness, while the melodic vocals of Shaw take over. “Destiny” is an inspirational Prog Metal track with plenty of indulgent guitar runs and keyboard fills. Shaw shows off his pipes with Halford inspired wails. Once you get to “The Maker,” you start to realize the biblical undertones of the album’s lyrics. Rivera’s Flamenco-style guitar run is sure to raise some eyebrows here.

“Reach For the Sun” goes in a completely different direction, but still comes off as one of the coolest power ballads in Heavy Metal. It starts off like a 1970’s Yacht Rock slow jam with cutting guitar licks in the background. Shaw gives a powerful and emotional performance. The band really took a chance here and pulled it off. LePond’s chunky bass line runs roughshod throughout “Fear & Fury” and Rivera lays down a great Eddie Van Halen inspired finger-tapping solo. Shaw gives you the best of his vocal range on “But You.” The track is full of his best highs, lows, and mid-range. The album concludes with a cover of Metallica’s “For Whom The Bell Tolls.” While DeadRisen’s version is shorter, the track pretty much stays true to form, with the exception of the added keyboards. This one is sure to thrill in a live setting.

A killer debut album! DeadRisen is epic and powerful. It’s almost movie-like in its presentation. Rivera takes the best of his Christian Rock legacy and blends it perfectly with LePond’s Prog Metal pedigree. Shaw is a powerhouse on vocals. The future looks bright for DeadRisen.



  • George Dionne

    George was a contributor here at Metal Express Radio, reviewing albums and conducting interviews, out of Massachusetts, USA. George has contributed to numerous music related websites and blogs, and even managed his own from 2004-2009. George's first assignment was covering a live show by the mighty GWAR. By contrast his later assignments featured Judas Priest, Van Halen, and Bon Jovi. George was also the front man for the South Eastern Massachusetts cover band Sound Tower from 2009-2015.  Sound Tower played 300+ shows across MA and had two original songs on the Cape Cod radio station PIXY 103. George enjoys a good whiskey, scotch, and/or bourbon and fights crime in his spare time.

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