If you’re not too down with the kids, and the modern Metal scene, you may be forgiven for not knowing who Sylosis are. My first awareness of the band, came when I went to see As I Lay Dying. Sylosis were supporting, and although I thought they were fairly good, I did slightly disregard them as another mediocre modern Metalcore-y type band. My initial perceptions were a bit ignorant, as the band actually resemble something closer to Thrash Metal than Metalcore. There are no breakdowns, no continuous alternations between hardcore vocals and clean sung chorus’s. Musically the band are very thrashy, but the vocals are much more aggressive and harsh than those usually used in that form of Metal.
Released about a month ago, Edge of the Earth is Sylosis‘ second album. I was impressed with their new single, and now it’s time for me to review the album. Will it prove to be a modern classic, or just another mediocre attempt and re-energizing the Thrash genre, with a generic modern twist? Find out after the jump.
Sylosis – Edge of the World
1. “Procession” 6:45
2. “Sands of Time” 5:07
3. “Empyreal (Part 1)” 4:52
4. “Empyreal (Part 2)” 1:07
5. “A Serpent’s Tongue” 5:23
6. “Awakening” 3:59
7. “Kingdom of Solitude” 5:37
8. “Where the Sky Ends” 3:56
9. “Dystopia” 5:44
10. “Apparitions” 7:15
11. “Altered States of Consciousness” 5:31
12. “Beyond the Resurrected” 5:10
13. “Eclipsed” 4:46
14. “From the Edge of the Earth” 7:38
If it isn’t obvious from just looking at the tracklisting, this is a bit of a beast of an album. 14 tracks and 72 minutes in length, no wonder it’s taken me a few weeks to get this album reviewed. It isn’t easy to digest. They don’t usually make albums like that anymore, actually giving the consumer some value for money. It’s definitely a breath of fresh air, but the only problem is, can the band sustain a high quality of music for 72 minutes, and will the listener get bored? The first time I listened to this album, I was banging my head away after 9 or 10 minutes, enjoying the music, and I was shocked to see that I was only just approaching the end of track 2. Also, it’s worth noting that the album artwork is badass. But you can see that from looking above.
Although Sylosis are still considered a relatively new and upcoming band, you wouldn’t know it from the start of this album. Beginning with an atmospheric and eerie introduction, it’s only mere seconds before a powerful, blistering Metal track pounds your ears and massacres your hearing. Musically, the band come across as veterans, flowing from brilliants riffs to melodic harmonies and awesome solos. Opening track ‘Procession’ is everything an opening track should be. Fast, powerful and brutal. It sets the tone for the rest of the album perfectly.
The album starts strong, and doesn’t let up. What I love about this album is, that it’s often melodic, but isn’t clichéd like many Metal bands are today. Clean vocals do appear in this album, but they’re never overused and always fit the music perfectly. The rare use of clean singing or soft melodic passages only heighten the music’s strength, and dynamics to the album. Instrumentally, the music is both complex, yet melodic and catchy. Don’t let the image and age of the band put you off, technically, the band are obviously very talented.
So does the music lose itself a bit in the middle? Actually, no, it really doesn’t. The music remains strong throughout the whole album. That doesn’t make it an easy listen however. Perhaps it’s just me, but trying to put aside 72 minutes to listen to an entire album, and actually stick with it all the way, can be fairly difficult. As a person that loves to digest an album as an entirety, rather than listening to odd songs, it’s fairly difficult to do that with this album. Is this really a bad thing though? How can I criticize a band for creating a 72 minute album that remains brilliant through to the end? The answer is, I simply can’t.
Towards the end of Edge of the Earth, the album ends just as it started; fantastically. The final track ‘From the Edge of the Earth’ is one of the strongest on the album, with an awesome melodic introduction, and catchy riffs throughout the track. The song ends with some brilliant singing, and a beautiful melody. The song proves to be an epic, modern Prog Thrash song, clocking in at over 7 minutes in length.
Overall, I’m incredibly impressed with Sylosis and their new album. I must admit, I have yet to hear their first album, but if Edge of the Earth is anything to go by, the band certainly are doing a fantastic job. I don’t believe the band have quite reached their best yet, but this is a brilliant beginning, so all I can say is, bring on the third album!