Fire From The Sky review by Shadows Fall

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  • Released: May 15, 2012
  • Sound: 9
  • Lyrics: 7
  • Overall Impression: 9
  • Reviewer's score: 8.3 Superb
  • Users' score: 8.5 (26 votes)
Shadows Fall: Fire From The Sky
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Sound — 9
Shadows Fall has always been a band I've been infatuated with, from their earlier years to their first effort on their own label. Guitarist Jon Donais and drummer Jason Bittner have always left me in awe after each album from a technical standpoint, and everything about them has always been crushing, and "Fire From The Sky" is no exception to that. It is a continuation of their previous work that adds in something new; some heavier influences from more classic thrash metal bands like Metallica or Slayer. The guitar playing has changed a little, but in a way that somehow adds something new yet takes away nothing from their previous work. That's hard to do musically. The vocals here can be equally melodic and crushing, guitar work is as brilliant as ever, and the drums never disappoint. Jason Bittner has won awards and recognition, and he hasn't lost a step.

Lyrics — 7
The lyrical work on this album isn't supposed to be considered conceptual. A hand full of songs however, are supposed to reflect today's culture and the possibility that we may be on the path to destroying ourselves. I wouldn't doubt that one bit, but that's a discussion for the pit, not my review. I don't think from a poetic standpoint that the lyrics are incredibly complex, but they do make use of metaphors instead of just yelling whatever comes to mind into the microphone which is more than I can say for a lot of metal bands. And they do have statements to make. Going back to what I said in the first paragraph, I think the album shines the most from an auditory point of view. The actual sound of the vocals surpass the lyrics. And to be quite frank; I'd rather that I enjoy what I listen to than agree with the political or cultural views of a horrible singer/screamer.

Overall Impression — 9
Overall, I prefer this album over their last release, "Retribution". It wasn't a bad album, but I probably think it's my least favorite. There weren't a lot of tracks that I felt were "punishing", and it seemed like they were wondering where to go now that they didn't have a big corporate label telling them were to go. I think they have eased their way back into their old selves but kept their integrity by trying some new things on "Fire From The Sky". I really enjoy "Save Your Soul", "Weight Of The World" and although "The Unknown", which is the title track isn't a favorite of mine, it's a prime example of the thrash element they're introducing here. And it sounds good. I'd definitely get the album again if it were taken from me. And it's an absolute steal at only $9.99. And the version from Best Buy has a bonus DVD with it as well. Can't go wrong for that kind of money, and more of it is going towards the artists rather than the record company than their previous records. This last statement might be bold, but I feel I need to say it. Bottom line: I think this is their best work since "The War Within".

18 comments sorted by best / new / date

    Ibeanez
    Does this album really have "intense ass drums"? I've been wanting to check out some ass drums.
    Morphogenesis26
    EpiExplorer wrote: Its not that great, doesn't sound like they can really improve themselves as a band anymore.
    This is an improvement from their last 2 releases, so I would say that statement is silly. Album sounds pretty good, but nothing new.
    SilverSpurs616
    I'm more of a fan of their older stuff (Art of Balance, War Within etc) but this album really does it for me. I was especially impressed by Matt's vocals, his growls and his cleans really shine on this album but they don't overshadow Brian's vocals either. It's a good balance. Lots of groovy riffing from the guitars, drums are tight, nice shreddy parts from Jon too! I'd give it an 8/10, it's a solid album but I think it could have done with a ballad-type song similar to "Another Hero Lost". Definitely worth a listen
    joshbw
    Its ok, Not the biggst fan of all time. There not In Flames but its good.
    vppark2
    good reviews guys. i found this album to be pretty good, but yeah, theyve had better.
    EpiExplorer
    Its not that great, doesn't sound like they can really improve themselves as a band anymore.
    bdof
    Hmmmm...UG can't find the time to review a REAL band's album?
    BwareDWare94
    I feel like Jon Donais is finally soloing with feel again. Thread of Life and Retribution, though great albums themselves, it seemed like every lead was just meandering and had no purpose. Jon's doing something this time around. These solos have structure and they fit the songs. I love it. I can finally hear the genius in Jason Bittner's drumming, too. So glad about that. It's very subtle but he's definitely worthy of all the recognition.
    EpiExplorer
    Dynamight wrote: Fantastic album art though.
    Mmmno, its something I've seen before quite a few times, hasn't got that much 'wow'. Might just be the same artist. My favourite is the Thin Line Between by Neuraxis.
    BuriedAlive7x
    In my opinion this Shadows Fall best album. I enjoy it from start to finish...I got the Best Buy Version which has two bonus tracks which are really good. I give this album a 10/10
    Abacus11
    SF is ok but anyone who's a fan of Brian's vocals should check out what he did in Overcast.
    Prometh3us
    His voice fits with the music he likes to create. He's a metal vocalist and does a kick ass job at what he does.