Friday, 1 June 2012
Review: Shadows Fall - Fire From the Sky
Opener The Unknown plunges straight into this display of pure heavy metal with an explosive opening of hyperactive thrashy lead guitar picking from Jonathan Donais accompanied by Matt Bachand's crunching breakdowns. And alongside the haunting melodies of the chorus the song tells us already that despite the newfound hyperactivity this remains one of the darkest and most doom-laden releases so far.
There's a varying range of metallic performances across the album and each is as exciting, energetic and fresh as each other. Whether it's the juggernaut grooves of Nothing Remains that suggests that Black Sabbath, Sleep and Orange Goblin has been listened to or the deadly intro of the album's title track that sees riffs crawl out like spiked roots twisting round listeners ears dragging them into a metallic oblivion.
But as someone who's recently been starting to hear traditional metalcore beginning to grow stale and unexciting, (Demon Hunter) it's amazing to hear just how much of an exhilarating rush Shadows Fall is able to keep Fire From the Sky sounding, while sticking to traditional metalcore values. So no trance beats anywhere.
There isn't really much else to say about the album. Basically, it's probably Shadows Fall's finest work to date. Brian Fair's performance is at it's most passionate, while the band's performance is sharpened to a tee. Even with such a negative emotional impact, there's still an extreme rush of metallic intensity and fiery exhilaration. I've not really gone around describing an album as "Must-Have" but, here ya go!
Shadows Fall's Fire From the Sky is out now via Razor & Tie. The band will play at Download Festival at Donnington Park, Derby on 10th July.