The debut album from Sweden’s The Sonic Overlords rumbles and shakes and vibrates its way into your personal space.
The Sonic Overlords are a new band, having come together in just the past couple years. Their music pays tribute to classic metal and extends the reach of the originist ideas by expanding the paradigm without breaking it. Other bands have tried to do this too but The Sonic Overlords actually pull it off. The band is Marcus Zachrisson Rubin (vocals), Morgan Zocek (guitars), Per Soläng (drums), and Daniel Ramírez (bass).
The first track, “Utopia,” is reminiscent of the Rainbow standard “The Gates of Babylon” in its esoteric warble but not so much in its fundamental construction, which relies on a different fundamental structure. A little bit later in the album, “Fools” has a very clever heavy riff that puts a unique torsion on a standard framing. This sort of accustoming is an enterprise at which The Sonic Overlords excel.
You can hear the doom metal come out on tracks like “Lords of Tomorrow.” Here again the path is a crooked one as heavy, slow doom guitar riffs partner with a melodic vocal and are taken to the next level by lead work worthy of Candlemass. All manner of variations can be heard throughout, as in “Sands of Time” with its latter-80s Iommi-ness and “Children of the Night” with its hard-hitting, churning rhythm that delivers a deep feeling of inevitability.
Everywhere you turn and everything you hear on this album brings a sense of breakthrough that coexists with familiarity. It is an excellent metal album. Recommended.
Last Days Of Babylon is out now through M-Theory Audio in the standard formats. The CD version features a guest appearance by Tony Martin who sings on “Past the End of Time,” a bonus track that is a reworked rendition of “Sands of Time.”
M-Theory Audio, https://www.m-theoryaudio.com/