BRANT

"Across An Ever Darkening Sky" (Solomon Entertainment; 2000)

Reviewed by Christopher J. Kelter

Brant comes from America's heartland and he's had some measure of success in the European underground. Brant is known for his horror-laced lyrics and spoken word pieces and with "Across An Ever Darkening Sky" Brant adds yet more material to the proliferating death metal canon.

The mere mention of American death metal causes some people to twitch uncontrollably with joy while others are bored to tears by it. It's quite popular these days to be in a death metal band, but you have to have some originality to stand out from the crowd. Brant takes significant steps toward moving away from the generic death metal pack and toward a signature sound  - although influences are still evident. "Across An Ever Darkening Sky" is the intersection of old-school death metal with modern touches as currently seen in the extreme and the bouncy rhythm-conscious metal scenes. 

Tracks like "Circles In The Golden Seas" and "Traumatized" have a "South Of Heaven"-era thrash/death metal aura about them. "Hammerhead" has a crisp groove that literally forces its way out of the speakers while "Breathing Fire" clocks in at less than three minutes but is jam-packed with taut riffs and effective vocal lines. 

Common sense is occasionally abducted by overindulgence (witness "Bringer Of Pain"), but those infrequent slips can be easily overlooked. 

Brant's vocal style is very deep without being guttural and works really well with the tales of destruction and the impending apocalypse. 

"Across An Ever Darkening Sky" does not impress upon the first listen, but does gain a certain like-ability after a few spins. 

Brant is Brant on all vocals and voices, Jeff Grady on guitars, Kelly Matthews on drums.  

Rating Guide:

A classic. This record will kick your ass.

Killer. Not a classic but it will rock your world.

So-so. You've heard better.

Pretty bad. Might make a nice coaster.

Self explanatory. Just the sight of the cover makes you wanna hurl.

 

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Copyright 2000 by R. Scott Bolton. All rights reserved.
Revised: 28 Feb 2016 12:55:58 -0500 .