Job for a Cowboy
Sun Eater


4.0
excellent

Review

by Chris Maitland USER (49 Reviews)
November 14th, 2014 | 284 replies


Release Date: 2014 | Tracklist

Review Summary: "I am the Destroyer of Worlds"

There is arguably no other band in the modern metal landscape that has spawned more internet and in-person verbal fights than Job for a Cowboy. They picked up a steady group of passionate followers and detractors when they released their debut 2005 EP Doom and the arguments have only gotten more intense over the years as they've drifted further away from the deathcore sound that first got them noticed. If anything is going to silence the legions of Job for a Cowboy detractors out there, it's going to be their new LP Sun Eater, which is not even remotely similar to anything the band has done in the past.

Sun Eater is much more reminiscent of foreign atmospheric death metal a la Gorguts and Morbus Chron than the contemporary American death metal they tackled on 2009's Ruination and 2012's Demonocracy. The technicality the band has brought to the table on their past few releases is still very much present, there's just a more of a focus on establishing a mood than constantly bombarding the listener with mind-numbing speed. The more expansive approach to the songwriting on Sun Eater allows the band to dive into the most ambitious, sprawling material they've ever produced.

Album opener "Eating the Visions of God" will more than likely take back anyone who's ever heard Job for a Cowboy before. The majority of the riffing is subdued, there's prominent bass throughout, the moments of technicality are unexpected and exciting, and there's an overwhelming aura of dread throughout the six-and-a-half minute runtime. Cuts like "Sun of Nihility", "The Synthetic Sea" and "Buried Monuments" only build upon the strength of "Eating the Visions of God". All of these songs have a distinct structure with dynamic instrumentation and moments of nuanced gloom that build organically into beautiful extreme metal bedlam. Even the more straightforward tech-death affairs on the record ("The Stone Cross", "A Global Shift") feel more fluid and dense than anything they've crafted in the past. The moments of subtlety in-between the chaos in the compositions allow Sun Eater to stand out from a vast majority of other recent tech-death releases.

The change in sound on Sun Eater also brings a lot more attention to the vast amount of talent Job for a Cowboy possesses. This is a band that has gone through a revolving door of members since their inception a decade ago (vocalist Jonny Davy is the only founding member still in the band,) and this incarnation of Job for a Cowboy is light-years ahead of any of their previous lineups. Guitarist Tony Sannicaderio evolves to the next level as a player with the most intricate riffs and solos he's ever written, session drummer Danny Walker (Intronaut, ex-Exhumed) seamlessly integrates himself into the fold and Davy delivers yet another strong, unabashedly evil vocal performance. However, the MVP of Sun Eater is bassist Nick Schendzilos. I have absolutely no idea why Job for a Cowboy waited so long to unleash this beast on the world. The flawless tone and finesse of the bass plays an integral part in helping establish the haunting atmosphere that runs through Sun Eater. The rest of the metal world needs to listen and take notes on how bass is used on this record. Bass is criminally underutilized in metal and Sun Eater serves as a perfect testament of just how effective it can be when its prominently featured in the music.

The constant shifts in sound Job for a Cowboy have made throughout their career have all culminated with Sun Eater. If Davy wasn't the vocalist, it couldn't even be identified as a Job for a Cowboy album. The variation of the songwriting and excellent musicianship throughout makes this album monumentally better than anything they did in the past. While there are times the record becomes meandering ("The Celestial Antidote", "Worming Nightfall"), the overwhelming strength of the rest of the album is more than enough to forgive the couple of missteps along the way. There will undoubtedly be some people out there that will dismiss Sun Eater simply because of the band's early reputation as the kings of pig-squealing, breakdown-laden deathcore. But for those open-minded listeners who are willing to overlook the days of "Knee Deep" and "Entombment of a Machine", you'll be treated to one of the most rewarding and dense death metal releases of 2014.



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user ratings (519)
3.9
excellent
other reviews of this album
Gameofmetal EMERITUS (4)
A new sun is rising....

Benjamin Kuettel STAFF (4)
Newly inspired and monstrously effective....



Comments:Add a Comment 
Nocturnalize
November 14th 2014


2463 Comments

Album Rating: 4.5

JFAC with a 3.9 average and three 4 rating reviews



The times we live in........

BigPleb
November 14th 2014


61221 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

Album rules ye.

Digging: Napalm Death - Throes of Joy in the Jaws of Defeatism

emester
November 14th 2014


8271 Comments


band has come a long way

cmaitland421
November 14th 2014


408 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

"JFAC with a 3.9 average and three 4 rating reviews



The times we live in........"



Speaks volumes for the evolution JFAC has made as a band.



tacos n stuff
November 14th 2014


3181 Comments


wait so this actually...worth listening to?

Insurrection
November 14th 2014


24770 Comments

Album Rating: 3.5 | Sound Off

surprisingly

Uranium
November 14th 2014


7549 Comments


damn i was gonna write this one off but im pumped for it now

TalonsOfFire
Staff Reviewer
November 14th 2014


18979 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0 | Sound Off

They always had it in 'em

Digging: Fleet Foxes - Shore

Gameofmetal
Emeritus
November 14th 2014


10813 Comments

Album Rating: 4.5 | Sound Off

Great review. Kinda think you overplayed the member changes, I don't think they've had nearly as many as a lot of bands.



You hurt me when you said the celestial antidote was a weak track. That shit gets me going every time, might be one of my favorites.

cmaitland421
November 14th 2014


408 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

I mean they're not at the level of The Faceless or Black Dahlia Murder, but there's been quite a bit of member changeover in JFAC over the years.

Gameofmetal
Emeritus
November 14th 2014


10813 Comments

Album Rating: 4.5 | Sound Off

Maybe. Al Glassman has been there since Ruination I think. Most of the members stick around for at least a couple releases and they don't seem to replace more than one for each full length....which is pretty good by modern standards lol

YuriZakhaev
November 14th 2014


670 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

Every new wave of 'metalheads' gets progressively more retarded than those directly before them.



Someone's mad.

Gameofmetal
Emeritus
November 14th 2014


10813 Comments

Album Rating: 4.5 | Sound Off

I kinda get the feeling that the old metalheads are just getting more senile but that's just my stupid opinion

Scoot
November 14th 2014


20119 Comments


how the fuck did they make this

Digging: Cloudkicker - Solitude

Nocturnalize
November 14th 2014


2463 Comments

Album Rating: 4.5

I'm so much less surprised then so many people here, always knew they were capable of greatness since Doom.

Gameofmetal
Emeritus
November 14th 2014


10813 Comments

Album Rating: 4.5 | Sound Off

Wait why is this the default review now?



My territory has been encroached upon....

cmaitland421
November 14th 2014


408 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

I was wondering the same thing. Yours has way more pos' than mine.

Gameofmetal
Emeritus
November 14th 2014


10813 Comments

Album Rating: 4.5 | Sound Off

"This is a better review so it makes sense"



y u do dis 2 me

TalonsOfFire
Staff Reviewer
November 14th 2014


18979 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0 | Sound Off

Great review, pos'd



I honestly think our three reviews for this are all great and about on par with each other in terms of quality. I'm guessing

the default review might change every once in a while to give everyone a chance to be in the spotlight, like with Dream

Theater's Octavarium and Whitechapel's self-titled.



There's room to breathe on the compositions on this record and those moments of subtlety allow this record get under

your skin in a way that most releases in this genre only dream of.




Some parts of the review read awkwardly. You might want to consider changing some sentences, especially this one.

Gameofmetal
Emeritus
November 14th 2014


10813 Comments

Album Rating: 4.5 | Sound Off

Yeah agreed. I'm not mad just curious. Mine's been soaking up the attention anyways.



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