Somber Eyes To The Sky Review

artist: Shadows Fall date: 07/15/2008 category: compact discs
Shadows Fall: Somber Eyes To The Sky
Release Date: 1998
Label: Lifeless Records
Genres: Heavy Metal, Death Metal/Black Metal
Number Of Tracks: 10
10 track debut album from Springfield MA based metal band, including 'Revel In My Loss', 'Lead Me Home' and 'Suffer The Season'.
 Sound: 10
 Lyrics: 10
 Overall Impression: 10
 Overall rating:
 Reviewer rating:
 Users rating:
reviews (3) 21 comments vote for this album:
overall: 10
Somber Eyes To The Sky Reviewed by: DeathThrash007, on july 15, 2008
10 of 12 people found this review helpful

Sound: Somber Eyes To The Sky is the only Shadows Fall album that incorporate actual death metal genre. This album attributes the style of American brutal death metal and European melodic death metal, which shows both brutality and melody in it. Apparently it leans way more on the American brutal death metal side, which make them sound like they're heavily influenced by American death metal acts such as Suffocation, Skinless, Cannibal Corpse, Immolation, Morbid Angel, Obituary, and also they followed Matt Bachand and Phil Labonte old brutal death metal band Exhumed (not the deathgrind) and Perpetual Doom. 7 songs in the album are death metal, and 3 of them non-death metal. Songs like "Somber Angel", "Suffer The Season", "Eternal", "Nurture", and "Lifeless" are New York style of brutal death metal based, songs like "Pure", and "Revel of My Loss" are a combination of old school Florida death metal with melodic death metal, and the 3 other songs in the album are different. "Lead Me Home" is an melodic soothing acoustic song, "To Ashes" is an melodic death metal song, and "Fleshold" is a combination of thrash metal and melodic death metal. The sound is primarily focused on brutality which conveys idea of speed and aggression. The guitar work by Matt Bachand and Jon Donais contains various "brutal" elements such as the usage of intense complex palm muting power chord patterns, an extremely fast tremolo picking, and some scale movements that is similar to the American Style of Brutal death metal bands. This is shown in songs such as Somber Angel, Suffer The Season, Nurture, and Eternal. There are also melodic element parts in some of parts of their songs. The drums are faster involving some blast beats and some complex drum patterns. // 10

Lyrics: The lyrical themes of this album are death, life, society, suffering, struggles, pain, loss, depression, contradiction, and anger. The band tend to show their anger, aggression, strong emotions, and natural feelings to convey their lyrical themes. The vocals are death metal based, Matt Bachand and Phil Labonte uses a low guttural brutal Death growl, and Jon Donais uses Death shriek/scream, sometimes Phil tends have different kind of growling range, usually from mid-range to low. Matt tends Death growl really low and guttural. // 10

Overall Impression: No other Shadows Fall albums compare to this one. This album is absolutely the key of showing their actual true metal genre. They show that death metal was alive in brutality back in the '90s. I'm not going to lose this album ever, and I will spend another like 10 hours downloading it again. // 10

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overall: 10
Somber Eyes To The Sky Reviewed by: unregistered, on january 05, 2007
4 of 5 people found this review helpful

Sound: This is Shadows Fall heaviest album ever created, and the sound has some uniqueness of Metal music. The style blends in with american death metal, old-school thrash metal, and Gothenburg metal (Swedish melodic death metal), which creates something new which makes the music both brutal and melodic, also this is one of the heaviest metal combination I ever heard. the two guitarist Matt Bachand and Jon Dionais creates the crushing metallic guitar riff with lots intensity and brutality makes sound crunchy and heavy, and the melodicness also flows well. The drumming is like very fast and sometimes the drumming use blast beats. 01. Revel In My Loss - a good song with a cool intro, then goes into a fast heavy riffing and some parts remind me of Morbid Angel and Death style, espcially the ending, but the bridge is slow and melodic. 02. Pure - this is also good, with a cool intro and stuff, this song is very long and the songs is based on melodic death metal with brutal touch, the solo in this is sick. 03. Lead Me Home - very nice acoustic intrusmental song Similar and the nice emotional solo flows well with it. 04. To Ashes - a good and long song, but gets a little to boring, because it's kind of like traditional melodic death metal of Dark Tranquility, I'm not a big fan Dark Tranquility. The riff is mostly Melodic and acoustic parts with both harsh and clean singing, but I like the harsh chorus along with a thrashy riff. 05. Nurture - this is a killer death metal song, with a wicked sick riff and a very harsh growling and screaming vocals it's fits into the style what they are doing. The solo is great, it's a fast shredding solo. 06. Fleshold - a decent song not the type of song that they should make, well I just hate Labonte clean singing and it does kind of sound dull like most vocals sounding in the Of One Blood, the harsh vocals is good and the heart pounding breakdown and the riff will just suit it. 07. Eternal - an awesome song in this album, this is a death metal song, it's very brutal, intense, and fast The guitar work is totally death metal, it's heavy as you think. Matt Bachand doing the background vocals in this sound, and also Jon Donais adds some screaming into, also Phil fills the vocal works in, like He did a very nice low death growling in the chorus. 08. Suffer The Season - another awesome song, this is another death metal songs they make really well I love the guitar work it obviously sounds death metal because it is also heavy as you think I mean it's brutal, and Matt Bachand did a excellent job doing the backup vocals especially in the bridge, his very low death growl blow me away, at the end of the song is a killer, very fast intense riffing along side Matt - death growling, Jon - screaming, Phil - growling really fast. 09. Somber Angel - this song is a amazing long song, starts out with nice acoustic intro then the goes wicked fast, it's starts a little bit of clean singing then it jumps into a brutal death metal riffage with all 3 vocals doing death growling and screaming, man this songs shows a lot of intensity and brutality, the bridge is very sick as with the crushing riff with a very crunchy death metal sounding along side with Matt Bachand doing the very low Death Growling, Jon Donais doing the old-school death metal screaming, then after it goes to a clean singing, then a nice beautiful fast shredding solo, then it goes back that crushing death metal riff again with Matt and Jon doing the vocals. 10. Lifeless - a good sound pretty melodic and brutal, but the bridge is like really stomping riff, then comes the nice solo coming along with it. // 10

Lyrics: The lyrics very long, and it was written in many desciptive words and poetry. The vocals styles are various in many ways, it's both harsh and clean but it's mostly sung in a very harsh vocals. Matt Bachand does a very low death growl and sometimes goes to midrange style of death growling. Jon Donais does the old school death metal screaming/growling style. Phil Labonte of All That Remains was the main vocals that time before he was replace by Brian Fair in late 2000, his vocals was harsh with growling and screaming, and it sounds similar to Randy Blythe of Lamb Of Gods vocals. // 10

Overall Impression: If you like death metal and thrash metal, I strongly recommend this album. This Shadows Fall most impressive album ever made, my songs on The album are Somber Angel, Suffer The Season, Nurture and Eternal. When I heard this album it blew me away completely it reminded some bands I heard like Suffocation, Immolation, Perpetual Doom, Cannible Corpse, Lamb of God, Hate Eternal, Vital Remains, Morbid Angel, Slayer, At The Gates, Soilwork, and a lot more bands. // 10

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overall: 10
Somber Eyes To The Sky Reviewed by: unregistered, on november 22, 2006
3 of 4 people found this review helpful

Sound: The style are used in many ways in this album. This album is a death metal album. Shadows Fall is a universal metal band that combines the style of american death metal and thrash metal, Gothenburg (swedish melodic death metal), and slight touch of grindcore. The guitar work is amazing, very complex, and creative. The riffs are very crunchy and intense which produces a lot of death metal to thrash metal sounding, sometimes it switch off to some fast Gothenburg riffing. Also the very powerful fast drumming and blast beats which fits into the song. Matt Bachand and Jon Donais are both very talented guitarist. I'm telling you guys the Instrumental works are amazing in this album. // 10

Lyrics: The lyrics are well written, poetic, and creative and it flows with the songs. The vocals are very growly and harsh, Matt Bachand does really low death growls, Jon Donais does the Black/Death/Grindcore scream, and Phil Labonate uses harsh vocals with both growls and scream. The vocals sound very death metal. // 10

Overall Impression: This is like Shadows Fall best album, I liked it very much, it's a lot better than Of One Blood which was Shadows Fall least impressive album, I'm not Of One Blood is a bad album, I'm saying it's not as good and not as original, Of One Blood is a little too Gothenburgish in thrashy taste. But The Art Of Balance, The War Within, and Fall Out From War are really good. I can't wait until the new album Threads Of Life to come out in early 2007, I'm sure that will be a really good album. Shadows Fall remind me of a lot of bands like Suffocation, Perpetual Doom, Lamb Of God, Immolation, Hate Eternal, Vital Remains, Morbid Angel, Death, Slayer, Overkill, Nuclear Assault, At The Gates, In Flames, Soilwork, and a lot more bands. I would be wicked piss of any of my CDs are lost or stolen especially this one, I will spent another hour downloading all the songs that stolen or lost. // 10

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