Oh, the hype! Shadow Of Intent just launched their highly anticipated, new album upon the world. Only one question remains… Is the world ready?
While the band has been around for a few years now, their breakout success occurred with last year’s debut full-length “Primordial”. Through that album, metal fans witnessed the unholy matrimony of Deathcore and Symphonic Metal with the vocal equivalent of a portal to hell. This spread like wildfire throughout the metallic underground and folks have been on their toes ever since.
Now that the wait is over, let’s slice this one up. “Reclaimer” is the name of the album. It packs in 12 tracks clocking in at nearly a full hour worth of ruthless material. This band moves independently which is hard not to respect given the waves they’ve been making. Speaking of which, if you want to support what Shadow of Intent are doing, the LP is currently available for streaming and purchase over on Bandcamp and merch can be found by CLICKING HERE.
For those who don’t know, this band is themed around the wildly popular first person shooter game series Halo. So, that begs the question, is this album legendary, heroic, or just plain normal? Let’s explore…
It begins with “We Descend” and only gets heavier from there. This band provides an supreme Deathcore style onslaught throughout the duration of “Reclaimer”. While listening, I found myself being consistently impressed by this band’s instrumental execution. They’re tight, technical, and pack a number of surprises up the sleeve. From the ripping guitar work to the pummeling drumming complimenting the grotesque vocal cords of frontman Ben Duerr, this is often a satisfying listening experience.
The singles did a great job of representing the incoming madness of this record. “The Catacombs” (featuring Infant Annihilator’s Dickie Allen along with Ingested’s Jason Evans), “The Horror Within”, and “The Heretic Prevails” are dangerous to say the very least. Tracks like “The Mad Tyrant’s Betrayal”, “The Gathering Of All”, and the epic closer “The Tartarus Impalement” will also likely leave you floored. The bottom line is that every track has something awesome happening.
It also has to be said that, in a world turning towards clean vocals in Deathcore music, Shadow Of Intent pull it off much better than most as they use the tactic sparingly and somewhat harshly.
Now, for the criticism… While I can dig the composition of the symphonic elements, the production of them frankly sounds cheap in my ears at times. Luckily, this isn’t a issue plaguing the majority of the record but it does have moments. Despite the band’s high octane playing, they aren’t exactly breaching new territory for the most part. But, at the same time, I don’t necessarily believe they’re trying to. They have their sound and that sound works for them. That being said, spare moments may feel like tired and overproduced Deathcore. Whether it be the chug chug of a slow breakdown or the attempt to make a single snare hit sound larger than life itself, moments may not be everyone’s cuppa tea – but what is? Plenty of people love that kind of stuff. That’s all I really have for negativity…
To answer the earlier Halo question, I’d say this album lands somewhere between heroic and legendary. This is probably one of the best albums I’ve heard out of the sub-genre in some time. The band is absolutely solid but I also think there’s still more room for evolution. They’re extremely talented with a bright future and I have a feeling they’ve yet to pull their full potential upon the unsuspecting galaxy. That being said, “Reclaimer” is a devastating addition to their discography. If you consider yourself to be a fan of Deathcore, Halo, or just heavy music in general – you’ll probably want to give this one a go!
That being said, if you’d like to give a listen, music video links can be found up above. And, once again, the entirety of this album is available for streaming and purchase over on Bandcamp with merch available to those who CLICK HERE! Go show some love.