Release date: Oct. 18, 2011
Record label: Epitaph
Official website: http://www.alesanaofficial.com/
The buzz: Armed with a killer new guitarist—Alex Torres, late of Greeley Estates and Eyes Set to Kill—melodic post-hardcore kids Alesana return with their fourth full-length release, an ambitious, 16-track concept album loosely based on Dante’s “Inferno.”
The verdict: Horns! Strings! Guys muttering in medieval Italian! These Raleigh, N.C., rockers have always packed a lot of epic ideas into their records (their second album was called “Where Myth Fades to Legend,” for Pete’s sake), but they really pull out all the stops here, both lyrically and musically. Fortunately, they’re smart enough not to let their scholarly inclinations get in the way of a good riff. "Inferno" themes aside, most of “A Place” is just good, proggy hard rock, with an emphasis on the interplay between Shawn Milke and Dennis Lee’s melodic and screamo vocals and the soaring leads of guitarists Torres and Patrick Thompson. And if it all inspires a few kids to start reading Dante, then so much the better.
Did you know? Alesana’s last album, “The Emptiness,” was inspired by the works of Edgar Allan Poe.