Now this is an album that I really have to be in the mood for! Fearful Symmetry is the new work from Jimmy Brown of Deliverance (r.i.p.) with help from Manny Morales and Rick Mester. This Sad Veil of Tears is much more in the vein of latter "D" material with influences of electronica, industrial, and goth mixed in with a little bit of metal. I'm very impressed that Jimmy used the name Fearful Symmetry here as he has gotten so far away from the original Deliverance sound that it only seems right that this be considered a different band.
Upon first listen, I was very unimpressed. I was actually almost bored to tears. I'm sorry, but I'd much rather listen to early Deliverance...even including Stay of Execution and Learn (which I enjoyed very much) instead of this stuff. I guess the challenge was trying to totally forget about Jimmy's past and just focus on this band as a separate entity. When I did this I found myself liking this more. Now, I'm not a fanatic over Fearful Symmetry, but it's not a bad disc. Fans who loved Brown's leanings on Camelot in Smithereens and Assimilation will find it much easier to love This Sad Veil of Tears. People who hated the latter Deliverance should stay way clear of this album.
The opening song "White" incorporates some crunchy guitars mixed with Brown's David Bowie-like, haunting vocals. However, he completely ruins the song by repeating the cheesy chorus of "Cry over spilt milk...and I laugh" it seems like 500 times. "Binah (The 3rd World)" sounds a bit more like late Deliverance and is a decent song. "Lead Us" is VERY different! This song sounds like a mix of Joy Electric and T.A.T.U. This song will be quite a stretch for most lovers of the big "D". "Slipping" has a little bit of a middle eastern feel in some of the guitar work and Jimmy's vocals remind me of some of his stuff off of the River Disturbance album. "Reinvent the World" also is reminiscent of the River Disturbance sound albeit with a electronica slant. The final song "Black (In the Alone)" may be my favorite track on the album as it carries the heaviest feel of all the songs, with the heavy guitars being in the realm of the Circle of Dust/Brainchild material by Scott, Klay, Albert, Celldweller,...whatever his name is today. I think I'd actually get into this disc more if the whole album was in a heavier vein like this song. I just got really bored with a lot of the lulls on the album. I can't handle slow downs, but these just didn't do it for me.
Lyrically, Brown seems to get pretty deep at times, but without lyrics in the booklet I don't really have much comment on them. The production sounds good overall, but the artwork is amateurish at best.
Hardcore Deliverance fans will probably do good to pick this album up. If you're not as open minded, approach with caution. I enjoyed parts of this disc, but other parts left me thinking about the next review I needed to write. My personal opinion, I'm happy that Brown is doing what he enjoys...more power to him. However, I enjoy early Deliverance way more than anything he's done since...be it latter Deliverance or Fearful Symmetry. (Review by Matt)