Sound — 10
This album brings back the raw emotion of "On Letting Go" and ads more fury and edge overall. Anthony Green's vocals are more steady with sparks of throaty roaring mixed here and there. Less high energy, more intensity. Some may not like the production and prefer they stick to more of a natural, garage feel but the electronic elements added to the vocals and background sounds add to the feel of the songs and a good example of this is the track "Nesting Dolls." Completely atmospheric and moving. Another great example are the vocal parts in "Only the Sun" and "Sovereign Circle." Heavier guitar sounds increase the intense feeling this entire album seems to push for.
Lyrics — 7
The lyrics go back to their tried and true ambiguity that they shied away from on their last album, "Violent Waves." I prefer this style of lyricism to direct, in your face verbiage that leaves little to the imagination. The lyrics leave you wondering what subject matters are really behind them, how they were feeling when they wrote it, etc. On the other hand, if too ambiguous it can be a bit confusing but if the music is good enough it will encourage you to go online and search for the deeper meanings behind the songs.
Overall Impression — 9
I enjoyed Violent Waves, but some fans felt let down by that effort and change in pace. This album definitely goes back to the harder sound the fans were looking for, but ads a darker edge to it. It is an easy album to listen to from beginning to end without having to do any skipping. Highlights for me are "Always Begin," "Only the Sun," "Quiet Down," and "Sovereign Circle." The lead single "Schema" is a good song overall, but lacks a groove and is more of a hard edge song. The closer, "Descensus," is the longest song on the album (8:53) and seems too dark, repetitive, and lacking in a presence to draw me in or keep me listening.