I AM I – Event Horizon (2012)
I AM I is the new band that has been put together by former Dragonforce frontman Z.P. Theart following on from what was evidently an acrimonious parting of the ways due to ‘insurmountable differences of opinion’.
Aside from Z.P., I Am I is comprised of drummer Paul Clark Jr, bassist Neil Salmon and guitarist and co-songwriter Jacob Ziemba who excels on both counts.
I AM I debut “Event Horizon” was released independently on CD last September, and now is available digitally with the addition of a bonus track.
Unlike the high technical heaviness of his former band, Z.P. Theart aimed I AM I to become more subtle and melodic, driven towards the classic and contemporary edges of metal with a Hard Rock / AOR feel.
“Event Horizon” is a winning combination of the new and the old as I Am I draw from the ’80s sounds and brings it right up to date with their kickin’ nerve.
Slick solos, rousing choruses and rock solid hooks are to be found right across the album and there is a huge buzz of excitement, energy and adrenaline from start to finish.
Vintage keyboards provide the introduction to one of the highlights of the CD; “This Is My Life”, before the song explodes into a rallying call to arms, Ziemba offering the first of several classy solos to go alongside some top notch speed-of light shredding. Killer opener.
“Cross The Line” and “In The Air Tonight” are packed with muscular riffs and strong melodies whereas the piano led power ballad “King Of Ruins” offers a change of mood and tempo and finds Z.P. in sparkling form, showcasing the remarkable variation in his range.
There’s more commercial hard rockin’ / uptempo AOR sounds in the superb “Silent Genocide” and “Wasted Wonders” (great keyboard line).
But my favorite and perhaps the more representative of the band’s style is “Kiss Of Judas”. It’s an impactul 6.24 min tour de force both catchy and strong with its chorus and mighty riffing & rhythms, but also complex and mysterious.
As bonus, I Am I has added a cover of the Andy Qunta / Chris Thompson penned classic song “You’re The Voice” made popular by John Farnham in 1986. Confirming their ’80s roots, the band delivers an emotional and edgy-melodic version.
“Event Horizon” may be their debut release but it is apparent that I Am I have very firmly established their credentials and made an immediate impact.
Z.P. no doubt feels he has a point to prove as he begins a new chapter of his musical journey and this recording can lay claim to be considered his finest achievement.
Even with an up to date modern attack, I AM I sounds decisive and with several ’80s reminders. There’s a few moments of really edgy retro melodic metal with British flavours, but most the time it’s wrapped with the typical Hard Rock and rocking AOR bombastic sounds of the glorious decade.
I got to say that I Am I has surprised me. I was not expecting this clean and catchy (yet powerful) delivery from Z.P. & Co. The mix and mastering by ex- Masterplan’s Roland Grapow helps to balance the abundance of melodic parts with some crisp edge.
A band with a bright future ahead of them.
01 – This Is My Life
02 – Silent Genocide
03 – Stay A While
04 – Cross The Line
05 – In The Air Tonight
06 – King In Ruins
07 – Kiss Of Judas
08 – Dust 2 Dust
09 – Wasted Wonders
10 – Pave The Way
11 – You’re The Voice (digital bonus track)
Z.P. Theart – Vocals
Jacob Ziemba – Guitar
Neil Salmon – Bass
Phil Martini – Drums
BUY IT !