Back in 2010, the band Elitist unleashed one of the most rhythmically complex records to ever bless my ears. The EP “Caves” bent the listeners mind from start to finish. The multi-talented Sean Hall (aka Sean Thall) was one of the two guitarists in the band at the time but left after the release of the band’s second EP “Earth”. I’m assuming he did this with the intention of pursuing personal artistic goals, but don’t take my word for it.
Earlier this month, Sean came back good as ever with a self-released instrumental EP titled “Terrestrial” which might as well be called “Sean Hall’s Guide To Playing Tight As F%@k.” Produced and co-written by Diego Farias of Volumes, the EP has a very legitimate feel to it. It starts out atmospherically with the track “Terraform” which features a sound bite from the movie Prometheus if I’m not mistaken (actually I think a good bit of the EP may be inspired by the “Aliens” universe which is beyond awesome). But the atmosphere is soon ripped into by a sharp “djent” tone leading into the type of awesome, in your face rhythmic pattern you should come to expect from him. The second track “Arrival” was released well before the rest of the EP but might be my favorite song off it. You can listen below. This track is incredibly tight and technical. It has a simple, yet very powerful lead starting a little over a minute in which really drives the song. This can be found in a couple parts of this EP. The lead guitar work isn’t always the most complex, but it is definitely effective. But Sean Hall is always driving the complexity of the rhythmic elements which is what he does best in my opinion. The same is true for “Orrery”, which is probably the most uplifting and melodic song on this release. It still manages to sound huge and provides an ear candy solo towards the end. When the 4th song “Xenomorph” (another “Aliens” reference) isn’t busy crushing your skull, it really brings the melody. It definitely has shades of Elitist, which makes sense considering it was co-written by Julian Rodriguez from Sean’s old band. The final track “New World” is just plain great. It really showcases Sean’s musical ability and probably has some the best lead guitar work on the entire release. It ends with a strong piano solo which really makes this song stand out.
This EP is a tight, technical feast for the ears. If you dig it as much as I do, you should consider buying it. The money will go towards making physical copies and shirts. This guy is a real jack of all trades artist (musican, tattoo artist, painter, etc.) who deserves all the support he can get.
In other news, Sean Hall is currently working with Elitist’s lead guitarist Julian Rodriguez again on a joint side project. Get stoked because they make a dangerous combo.