Friday, July 13, 2018
Skeletonwitch : "Devouring Radiant Light"
The press release said they are moving in a more black metal direction when they meant to say they were moving in a more European melodic death metal direction as evident from the harmonized melodic riffs in the verses to "When Paradise Fades" . There is some blasting at the beginning of "Temple of the Sun". It devolves into more of the a-typical thrash. Sung vocals join in a dramatic refrain before guitars return to their dizzying speed.The title track finds some of the band's most nuanced guitar work to date, though I think fans are wanting something that chews nails for breakfast. So me saying that so far this sounds like it is the band's most melodic album to date might be a turn off for some fans. If the big palm muted verse riff was at more of a gallop it would come across like a scowling version of Amon Amarth.
This album certainly doesn't feel as dark as the previous album, but if you like your metal big and majestic then this is for you. Sometimes the vocals drop into a lower death metal like growl but general carry a more mid range sneer. When they speed up into a more high tempo thrash on "the Luminous Sky" they begin to more me. "the Vault" has a more melancholy brand of melody to it that I prefer, though when it races into the verse it's business as usual. It's marginally hooky and the lyrics are some kind of generic heavy metal apocalyptic mish mosh. It's at this point in the album where due to the fast and furious pace they feel compelled things begin to sound the same to me and the songs start to run together.
"Sacred Soil" falls back onto what they have been doing the bulk of the album so far with the growls more accented when they get to the chorus. So it ends with a formula firmly in place and their foot on the gas. I'll give this one an 8. The production is a little bright , but the guitars sound great. The bass playing is very melodic and the band is firing in the right direction I could just stand for this to be a little darker and meaner.