Review: Edge of Insanity “Redemption”

Review: Edge of Insanity “Redemption”

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Score 75%
Summary
75 %
User Rating : 5 (1 votes)
 
 
  

Doom is a genre that has definitely grown on me ever since I got into metal all the way back in high school. In my earlier years I just liked stuff that was stupid heavy, really fast, aggressive maybe a little bit scarier to me at the time (having grown up in a Christian household), and I might’ve initially kind of thought that doom metal songs were a little bit too long drawn out and boring, although I did kind of admire it from a distance, and would indulge in my fair bit of Sabbath’s older material whenever I would feel in the mood for more old school traditional stuff. But over the years the style definitely grew on me quite a bit as I grew up and mellowed out, and I find it to be something that can set a really strong, perhaps relatively spooky atmosphere. Traditional heavy metal as well was something that I had a respect for, but also found kind of cheesy too- I associated it more with what your dad might listen to while throwing back some beers and firing up a grill maybe. But like doom, it too grew on me, especially when I would discover occasional doom and heavy metal gems at any stores I might’ve visited that still sold music, some being the combination of the two- the album The Wretch by The Gates of Slumber is still an album that I’m pretty sentimental about to this day, and I credit that album as being one of the albums of the genre that may have contributed to me warming up more to doom as the years passed, and traditional heavy/doom metal is probably one of my favorite styles of doom. And that’s the style that the release in question that we’ll be talking about in this article happens to be, Edge of Insanity with their recent EP, Redemption. They hail from my home state, Texas, and aside from a single, this is their first release.

It’s a pretty short release, only about 26 minutes long, only five tracks so I think it’d probably be best to cover this particular release track by track. You probably get the most straightforward doom metal song in their opening song, “Feed”, which kicks things off with a very somber, almost ominous tone, with a heavy, sinister riff. One thing that caught my attention pretty early on was how layered the music is, with some pretty interesting sonic effects every now and then, a lead and rhythm guitar that complements, yet also harmonizes very well with each other, particularly during the chorus, a pretty deep bass rumbling in the background, and drums that sound pretty decent in the mix in my opinion- they have a nice snappy tone to them. The vocals in this song have a pretty ominous tone, occasionally belting out some falsettos, showing off some pretty killer pipes, and top that off with a long, shredding, kind of badass and evil sounding solo, and you have a pretty decent first track. The vocalist doesn’t always deliver this same ominous tone throughout the EP, but he seems to capture quite a bit of emotion in his delivery, and that kind of became a little bit more apparent in the next song, “Prison”, which kind of already starts to shaking change things up a little bit in style a little bit, with almost more of an old school hard rock/heavy metal sound, with the riffs kind of having a quick break in them, and almost a backbeat sounding pattern on the drums. The bass also has a lot more time to shine in this song, with a pretty cool sounding bass line. It’s not without its doom metal elements, but you definitely hear a lot more of the traditional heavy metal elements starting in this song. The vocals in this song though have much more of a despairing tone to them, the lyrics being depressive, somewhat self loathing, being about the inner demons that torment you in the “prison” of your mind from what I gather, which I think is something that we all deal with on some level, but like the line in the chorus says, it’s a prison that we’re “begging to be free” from, and to me that’s kind of a strong message.

The next track, “Time”, really kind of starts off with almost a Judas Priest vibe for me, with more of a mid-paced old school galloping riff that sounds pretty catchy, and again, more killer pipes being belted out. It also has some slower riffs that give off more of a feeling of a heavy build up more than anything, and it has an especially satisfying build up around the middle of the song as it builds up to another killer shredding solo. The next song, “Undertow” is actually a major shift in style, with clean acoustic guitars, being played in more of a western style – it definitely emphasizes the southern roots of this band, especially with the powerful, soulfully delivered vocals, all while retaining this really deep, sorrowful, almost dark tone. I’m not really into country music most of the time- but I think country western or outlaw country is probably my one exception, so honestly, I like this track quite a bit. The last track actually has most of the same lyrics as the “Undertow”, but they seem like they might’ve added a few lines, but it returns with the same heavy/doom metal style, with some pretty decent riffs, and I actually think it’s kind of cool to hear two different takes on the same song. Like most of the tracks, they have pretty simple structure overall, with some killer shredding in between. Simplicity in songs do add a level of predictability, but at the same time, sometimes simplicity can work out pretty well and provide more of a memorable touch to the music, so I wouldn’t say that it’s a bad thing by any means. But with that predictable structure, it makes up for with songs that vary in ways that are pretty interesting.

Overall this album is pretty straightforward and stays pretty true to the traditional heavy/doom metal formula, but it has a pretty solid execution, pretty good musicianship, and filled to the brim with emotion. Despair, sorrow, doom, of course, and probably the most notable being depression. Some of the lyrics seem to imply suicidal contemplation. While those are miserable states to be in, I feel like art is such a powerful way to vent those intense emotions out, and when dealing with those emotions especially, I’d say that doom metal is great for that- so I kind of have a respect for artists who are able to channel that sort of energy into their medium, because it has a way of showing that you’re not alone if you’re experiencing or have experienced issues like that in your own life. Is this particular release the MOST original? Probably not. But it’s done in a way that both gets the point across, while also not being boring either.

So I’d probably have to give this about a 7.5/10. It’s definitely something that I might like when I’m feeling in the mood for some old school doom metal, maybe feeling down in the dumps, but it’s not something that I’d be religiously listening to sporadically over the period of a couple days because of how deeply ingrained it is in my brain. But I’d definitely recommend it if you happen to be in the particular mood to satisfy a doom craving! So feel free to check out my fellow Texas boys! So far from what I can tell it only seems to have a digital release, so if you want to throw them a bone you could probably give them a download, maybe check them out on Spotify or Youtube.

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