Rising – To Solemn Ash

By Chris Dyck

Ok, so after a listening to Rising‘s new album a few times it is clear that these Danish beardos have some serious riff skills. The production is solid, the songs are there for sure, but this one dimensional guitar tone they use is just killing me. It is not surprising though, a lot of bands in this genre are going hard with this tone: it is heavy but it’s getting a little boring. Gotta give them serious props for being a three piece that sounds this huge though. The further I get into the record the more I think this could easily be a Troy Sanders solo album. The vocals are really strong throughout the whole record, but therein lies the problem for me. It is the same flat yell vibe for most of the album, except when they go into Baroness-styled chorus vocals. A little more variety would keep things a bit more interesting.

The latter half of the record has some really interesting guitar sections and solos. This guy shreds and uses cool note choices in his leads, very nice. The song titles and subject matter seems to be fairly typical of whats happening in this “scene” right now, epic concepts, elemental/mythological lyrics, you know the deal. I would say that if you like Mastodon then you would love Rising, but I’m not sure that’s the case. Mastodon does this better and with a lot more shit going on. This record punishes, but it sounds like the same tune all the way through and most songs are in the same key, so that means the vocals are also. It just makes for a kinda flat sounding record.

If you dig Torche, Mastodon, Baroness, Kylesa and the like, then you will dig this to a degree I’m sure. A little more variety next time guys, otherwise this is punishing and promising. If these guys can pull this off live and deliver another record of this quality they should do well, that being said I still think they need some more depth and texture to their sound.

(Exile On Mainstream)

Sean is the founder/publisher of Hellbound.ca; he has also written about metal for Exclaim!, Metal Maniacs, Roadburn, Unrestrained! and Vice.