When I reviewed the previous Fictional release
Fictitious [+], I had nothing but good things to say about
it. As I listened to it more, the less it appealed to me. Part of this
was due to me realizing just how laughably bad some of the lyrics were.
But musically and vocally it had variety. However, after repeated listens;
only a few tracks such as "Blue Lights" and "Dream of God"
really stood out, leaving everything else somewhat forgettable. Basically,
it was one of those rare occasions where a CD sounded less interesting
the more I listened to it. And it was for this reason that I wasnít
really all that excited about this follow-up entitled Fiction. But I
figured since songs such as "Blue Lights" and "Dream of
God" were so popular, the band would want to deliver more songs
of that same magnitude on this recording. Also, since those songs featured
the vocals of Tim Fockenbrock (Ravenous), I thought
he would be the main vocalist on this release as well. But I was wrong.
Not only is this overall CD a much more mellow and relaxed recording
than Fictitious [+], but it also only features
one vocalist (Jason Bainbridge).
All of the music here is once again done by Gerrit Thomas. Heís best
known for doing the music for both Funker
Vogt and Ravenous.
And while I like his music; heís starting to fall into a rut. Basically,
if the vocals on this CD were provided by Jens Kastel this could be
a Funker Vogt release; and if the vocals were provided
by Tim Fockenbrock, this could be a Ravenous release.
Gerritís music is starting to sound the same on every project he works
on, and this is preventing his newer music from sounding fresh. He really
needs to try some new and interesting things with his music, because
his current sound is getting redundant.
Vocally, Jason Bainbridge is competent enough when it comes to delivering
the singing for these songs. While heís no Jens Kastel or Tim Fockenbrock,
his voice does lend well to Gerritís music. The problem is that he doesnít
have a lot of range, and ends up sounding the same on most of the songs.
And since the music sounds similar for most of the songs as well, it
almost seems like youíre listening to the same song a lot of the time.
This is a long CD offering fourteen songs. Unfortunately, most of them
are rather mellow making this album drag along a lot more slowly than
I would have liked. Actually, this CD doesnít pick up in pace until
it reaches track seven "Hunting Machine". This is one of the
best songs offered here with its energetic music and emotional singing.
Itís definitely a club track that would get the dance floor moving.
The only other song here that I would consider a club track is "Perfect
Stranger". Everything else plays too slowly for the dance floor.
The music is 100% electronic with sci-fi trance sounds mixed with heavy
bass beats over cold melodies. Most of itís mid-tempo, but it slows
down at times as well. Thereís an overall relaxed and laid-back sound
delivered throughout this entire CD. And itís for this reason that I
find it to be rather dull.
While the quality of this album is quite good, I donít think itís going
to appeal to the same audience who enjoyed the more club friendly
Fictitious [+]. Thereís not one track here that even remotely
comes close to matching the catchiness of "Blue Lights". This
recording will appeal much more to those who enjoy the music of Ravenous.
Fictional is a Gerrit Thomas project. This explains why this
band offers music similar to that of both Funker Vogt and Ravenous.
All of the songs delivered on this CD are extremely catchy with music
that instantly grabs you by mixing upbeat futuristic electronic programming,
dark dramatic synth melodies and hard driving bass beats along with
both clean and altered passionate male vocals.
This is modern EBM containing all of the elements that makes this genre
of music so superb. This overall disc is very polished and well produced
with the songs all delivered in a fantastic order. Once you begin listening
you are hooked and enjoy this ablum as much from the beginning as to
Thre is a lot of variety offered throughout this CD. This is due to
the great blending of EBM with synth-pop; and making it work so well.
Each track manages to stand out on its own as a hit. So you get a good
blend of clubfloor songs as well as more melodic songs. Basically, if
Funker Vogt and Ravenous were mixed together, Fictional would be the
end result. Thatís not a bad combination if you ask me.
Exclusive to this domestic release of the album are two live tracks
for the songs ďDream Of GodĒ and ďBlue LightsĒ. I could
have personally done without these as I donít really care for live music.
I would have much prefered remixes.
The bottom line is that if you like bands such as Funker
Vogt, Lights Of Euphoria,
Neuroticfish, Project-X and Ravenous;
this CD is for you.