Unearth – Darkness in the Light

Unearth was formed in 1998 in Winthrop, Massachusetts and this current release makes five studio albums in the bands repertoire. While some consider The Oncoming Storm as their seminal release and others consider The March to be their best work it is no doubt that anticipation ran high with the release of Darkness in the Light. With two powerhouse albums in their past were do the New Englanders land on their latest work?

They land hard and fast, start running and never slow or give up for eleven solids tracks. From the opening notes of McGrath and Susi on Watch it Burn its apparent that Phipps and company are prepared to bring it hard. When the full weight lets loose a complete torrent of dedicated emotion pours forth. The drumming and bass line, the absolute commitment to the vocals give the listener nothing short of full on metal. Phipps has more power in his delivery than either The Oncoming Storm or The March. Ruination of the Lost and Shadows in the Light follow quickly are further demonstrations of the musical abilities of each individual and collectively. There is not a note sung or played that is out of place. Each of the members seems to have reached deep into their respective emotional bags and pulled forth a nearly inhuman form of musical delivery.

Two tracks on this release have some serious added keyboard work, Arise the War Cry and Equinox which adds a nice complex layer to the music. Equinox especially catches some fantastic emotions as the keyboards are weaved together with McGrath’s picking to yield one of the best tracks on the album. The whispering vocals add that extra doom thread to the chorus of “Theres no way out”. It’s this ability of the band to capture these type of raw feelings in under three minutes that is yet another example of why this is their best work to date.

The album closes with Overcome and Disillusion which are both rally cries to action in their own rights. Disillusion is a harsh statement from Phipps and it is certainly obvious that there is a strong message he is sending out. From the first to the last the music is tight, no one is out of step anywhere. The pure power and commitment to this album is obvious from the power of Phipp’s vocal intonation to the blsitering McGrath sweeps. There is no question that this is the most power delivered by the band yet. Lyrically, there are real stories to be told and told they are. All in all a true tour-de-force release from the first to the last note. Darkness in the Light has far exceeded what most hoped for and brought Unearth promptly where they belong, center stage!

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Welcome , today is Thursday, August 11, 2011