Threads Of Life

Shadows Fall

Atlantic, 2007

REVIEW BY: Pete Crigler


One of the defining bands of the New Wave of American heavy metal that was so prevalent in the early 2000’s, Shadows Fall got their chance at the major label brass ring in 2007 with this disc. Right from the get go, the band come out swinging so punishingly heavy, it almost boggles the mind. The opening song “Redemption” is just so devastatingly fast and brutal that any metal-head will stand up and take notice. A tip of the hat to the band for instantly creating one of the coolest metal tracks of the last fifteen years or so.my_heart_sings_the_harmony_web_ad_alt_250

The album just continually gets better from there. Vocalist Brian Fair – he of the gigantic dreads – has a very powerful voice that handles just about everything the band comes up with. “Burning The Lives” and “Failure Of The Devout” are really great examples of this, just full of punishing riffs and Fair’s vocals that sail above them and just crush the competition. In many ways, their approach to riffs and vocals reminds me a lot of early Testament, and there’s absolutely nothing wrong with that at all.

While “Venomous” doesn’t seem to go anywhere and “Storm Winds” is a bit longer than necessary, there’s enough here to where that doesn’t matter. The album’s magnum opus, the almost seven minute “Last Call,” is good, though there are better songs elsewhere. The acoustic intro of “Another Hero Lost” sounds like their attempt at a ballad, but they manage to pull it off very swiftly without much exertion.

Album closer “Forevermore” kicks into high gear right from the get-go and never slows down, not even for a minute. Guitarists Jon Donais and Matt Bachand were a great, dynamic team together, and this is a great all-around showcase for both of them. Though Shadows haven’t released an album in quite some time as the members pursue other projects, the music continues to keep a load of fans’ interest going, particularly if they’re looking for some of the most extreme metal ever created.

Rating: B+

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