Album Art by Andrew Infanger
Timed Length of the Album: 35:38
- Synesthetic Perceptions
- The Writer
- Desert Sands
- Dream Sequence
- New World (ft. violinist John Brighton)
- The Season
- Austere (ft. guest vocalist Anna Hitchcock)
- Ab Aeterno
A wonderful cinematic score sets the tone for the collection of songs that make up the St. Louis quintet’s debut album. Reminiscent of a tune out of Beetlejuice, Edward Scissorhands, or another soundtracks in Danny Elfman’s discography, it’s a calming entrance to the sounds about to be heard. It culminates in a perfect transition to the album’s first full-length composition, The Writer.
After sitting down and really thinking about this song the first thing I struck me was that with the addition that the band made with the keyboard playing in harmony with the lead guitars in the intro, it kicks off sounding like the very first 5 seconds of a song called Paradigm Shift by Liquid Tension Experiment. It brings the pain with some precision drumming, a soothing mixture of harsh and vocals, and crafty musicianship suggesting the onslaught the rest of the album may offer.
Another nice transition between The Writer and Desert Sands as it starts out a trashy riff follow by more fascinating harmonizing dual guitars with some underlying keyboard work. The bridge is really catchy and leaves you wanting more. The harsh and clean vocals throughout the choruses are a recurring theme throughout the album as the two members compliment each other very nicely.
Dream Sequence is a poetic spoken interlude that also serves as an intro to the next song, New World, that features former Trans-Siberian Orchestra violinist John Brighton. His solo is placed where you’re not expecting it, giving first-time listeners a nice surprise. The harmonizing vocals, as well as the synth effects in the middle of the song reminiscent of Symphony X, make for another catchy, thrashy tune.
In The Season the band reminds us why we love metal for more than loud guitars and heavy vocals as they take us on a journey through the four seasons in this nearly four and a half minute instrumental. As one of the band’s older songs, it’s a beautiful composition that proves they’re truly a force to be reckoned with.
Austere, written late in the studio sessions by the band, is a solid song that features another surprise cameo, this time by a female vocalist named Anna Hitchcock. Three vocalists at once rounds off the song as it fades towards a smooth ending.
Ab Aeterno is a short intro to the final – and perhaps the most epic – composition on the album, Santosha. The first part is heavy, fast, and full of energy, while the second half leaves listeners in a trance, wanting more. The second half of the song also hints at their progressive metal influences in bands like like Opeth and Dream Theater.
Overall the album is very solid and will leave songs stuck in your head for days, until you give in and listen to it again. Very rarely does a band come along that makes you want to root for them to get signed and make it, but if they keep things up, one could definitely see great things happening for such a talented, creative, and passionate group of musicians that have come together to create an innovative sound combining melodic death metal with the likes of Kalmah , Children of Bodom, Eternal Tears of Sorrow and hinting at metalcore vocals like older Avenged Sevenfold and Trivium that you just can’t help but latch onto.
As far as the quality and production goes, the album sounds pretty tight and legit. Each was carefully mixed and mastered by the members themselves, meaning the same people who wrote the songs had to listen to them over and over and over again while mixing & mastering the final versions… Brutal…! But seriously, don’t let the fact that the album was self-produced be a downside, as this debut collection is as professional as indie-label bands at least.
Damnation Rating: A
If this review has left you with a curious appetite for awesome metal, release date is set for February 27th as Mike Judy present Sinith Hall’s CD Release Show with special guests Shotgun Bayonet, The Vanguard Party, Granite Cloud, and Traitor’s Circle. Tickets are $5 from the bands if you get them in advance and $8 at the door with an additional $3 surcharge for those under 21 years of age. The doors open at 5p.m. and the show starts at 5:15p.m. so get there early and start partyin’!
Tom McCarty – Vocals
Eric Wiesler – Guitars/Vocals
Mack Barrow – Drums
Nick Rose – Guitar
Ricky Matsko – Bass
Review by: Steve K.