Sound — 10
Shadows Fall's sound is very reminicent of old school thrash like early Metallica and Megadeth except they combine influences ranging from extreme death metal to classic rock. The guitar riffs are absolutely brilliant and are perfectly executed by guitarists Donais and Bachand. Theyre twin guitar attack is the best I've heard in years. Bass and drums are equally awsome proving this to be very pleasant to listen to. They create some great melodies with a lot of Zakk Wylde style harmonic squeals and in songs like "The Light That Blinds" they even use acoustic guitars. Being a guitarist myself I love guitar solos and there is one in every song and they are quite impressive.
Lyrics — 8
Personally, I hate bands with singers that just scream, but the way Brian Fair does it it just fits the music incredibly well. Most of the time you cant understand what hes saying but there are surprisingly a lot of moments of "normal" singing, such as in "Stillness". I pay a lot more attention to the guitar, but the lyrics/singing fit very well.
Overall Impression — 10
Simply put, Shadows Fall is the best metal band in years and this is the best metal album of the year. The most impressive song I'd have to say is "The Light That Blinds", but seriously every single song is absolutely awsome. If I had to be critical though I would say that I wish there were more moments of "normal" singing where I could understand what he was saying and although all of the solos are quite memorable, a few of the solos feel a bit underwhelming, like the potential is there but it could be better. If it was lost or stolen I would definately go buy it again and I would recommend you go buy it too.