Society's Sorrow - The Calm Before The Storm
Coming in at a respectable 10th in this year's contest, Society's Sorrow also managed to earn the highest user ratings of the top 10 bands. It's not a challenge to understand why after a quick listen to their EP/demo The Calm Before The Storm, which rages with the gritty, thrashy heavy metal prevalent in the burgeoning metal underground of the 1980's. Think Metallica, Megadeth, hell, even Guns 'n' Roses. Something distant from the hair-metal craze that swept up the airwaves. Something many a metalhead still craves for ravenously.
The tracks will be all too familiar to fans of those classic sounds. Greed, Not Need chugs along on some slightly standard modern riffing before Joe Gilker's lead vocals flashes a sign of the nostalgia-trip the album is really all about. The songs are written in the vein of Dave Mustaine, for the most part; from the vocal melodies (excellent, superbly produced and written for any band's first recorded effort) to the frequent dive-bomb solos, which "JasonX" Andrews pulls off with the upmost confidence in his abilities. High Road To Hell really shines, and it probably would have made a solid radio single for the band 20 years ago. Now, even though theirs is a sound fashioned mostly for the more aged metalhead, it's pure, unabashed ass-kicking rating is off the charts.
I'm going to be anticipating Society's Sorrow's debut full-length with much hope for more of the same; low-frilled, high-fueled, powerful thrash that isn't afraid to pay homage while standing precariously on the edge of their own creativity. I hope they get their drummer problem solved (really the only part of the record I wasn't too impressed with and the drummer featured here has since departed) and manage to mold this glorifying sound into something specifically belonging to the entity known as Society's Sorrow.
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