Stylishly blending ferocity of tone with musical precision and equal parts intensity and melody, new metal outfit Somber Skies rebuild the classic darkness of hard rock, throughout a boldly atmospheric and faultlessly performed Malevolence.
Coming in at four minutes and fifteen seconds in length, Malevolence makes fine use of structure – incorporating each new section with clear juxtaposition for impact, maintaining that shifting dynamic throughout, and never clinging to a single trait for longer than the moment requires.
In short, it’s the songwriting that drives things – these ideas and feelings captured in time, by an array of soaring guitars, other-worldly production, fearless distortion and both the delicacy and power of voice.
As the track evolves, intensity more notably takes the wheel – the passion snowballing to ultimately fade out as an unresolved blaze. Then when we return to the start, the atmospheric or cinematic details really stand out to begin the journey; followed by the whisper, and the subsequent drop into the presence and pace of that leading guitar, bass and drums pattern.
The stop and start energy is key, and so this tired, dreamy and distant verse vocal appeals for its vulnerability and softness, and the following metal roar utilises that same degree of contrast to create a powerful and unexpectedly catchy hook.
A brilliantly crafted debut, Somber Skies master the art form and create a heavy yet hypnotic space – into which rock and metal fans can truly escape; connecting with the tuneful embrace as much so as the authentic manner in which the music screams out on their behalf.