(NCS writer TheMadIsraeli is taking a different tack with his list of the year’s best albums — either reviewing or re-assessing each of them, one by one. Here’s the first.)
I have been truly dreading reviewing this album for the simple reason that I may fail to describe adequately what this album means to me in the modern metal landscape. I never got to review this album during my tenure at The Metal Register before we shut down, but I was supposed to. I’m glad it didn’t go down that way now, because I’ve been able to sit on this album and really take it in. It’s been in constant rotation all year, regardless of what else beckoned my listening habits.
I remember when self-anointed critics were unreasonably hammering these guys, after three EP’s and a debut full length, for being a Trivium knockoff, simply because they were busy taking Trivium’s thrash/metalcore hybrid sound to the next level. Sylosis has come a very long way since then, along with numerous lineup changes, with only mastermind and guitarist (now also vocalist) Josh Middleton remaining. The lineup established on Conclusion of an Age marked Sylosis finally establishing their identity, finally cementing what it was they wanted to do. The Conclusion of an Age lineup is still here, minus vocalist Jamie Graham, in their triumphant, flawless victory known as Edge Of The Earth.
Sylosis are THE modern metal band, combining old-school thrash metal aesthetics, metalcore energy and dynamics, and powerful and majestic melodeath melodies. THEY ARE the ultimate example of the future in metal that lies in the hybridization of sub-genres. They manage to take the best of these three schools of thought while throwing out the superfluous, unneeded bullshit, and manage to form a cohesive sound that never fails to hit on target.