Saver
They Came with Sunlight


4.0
excellent

Review

by Simon STAFF
March 10th, 2019 | 17 replies


Release Date: 2019 | Tracklist

Review Summary: "Like hitting the road, except upwards with no rear view mirror.“

SÂVER are on to something here, they really are. The Oslo trio’s debut album contains some of the most cathartic, heavy and experimentally rewarding ideas of 2019. If there’s one thing They Came with Sunlight does extremely well, it’s making you feel unwelcome in its hopeless and dejected soundscape. “Distant Path”’s introduction is met with unease; an abandoned bassline being strong-armed by droning electronic static and a haunting synth melody, building to the apex of its foreboding mood before slamming into a lumbering and gargantuan sludge riff. The band knows how to grab your immediate attention, and it utilizes this strength frequently during its 6 tracks. The first two minutes of “Distant Path” makes your initial listen a more attentive one; its aberrant songwriting makes things all the more intriguing, and the kick-in is excellent as well. On the exterior, They Came with Sunlight is a conventional doom metal record with all the sludge-y trimmings attached, however there’s subtle undertones being drawn from various sub-genres: lashings of hardcore, metalcore and post-metal being the most apparent – resulting in a far more memorable record because of its outward thinking. That said, ambience plays an intrinsic role here and solidifies the densely consistent tone throughout. The introductory build-up section to “Altered Light” or the exclusive instrumental track “Influx” really sets the mood before hitting you with odd rhythms and rudimentary note sequences. It’s all familiar grounds for fans of this kind of music, but the vivid instrumental world-building and excellent handling of doom’s established frameworks result in a great listening experience that thinks outside of the box. The Adam Jones tinged guitar solos are another unwonted mesh with doom’s archetype, but it’s a trait that adds flourishes of colour and dynamic to the songs at hand – shaking off any of the fatigues that are about to set in.

Unfortunately, with all that SÂVER gets right, they fall victim to not quitting while they’re ahead. Some of the shortcomings aren’t necessarily the band’s fault as such; doom as a genre is built upon long-winded runtimes, so you have to be a bloody special band to make that time feel warranted. Bar maybe “Distant Path” for having the most engaging songwriting (a welcoming pat on the back for its 11 minutes zipping past in the blink of an eye), every track thereafter has a sagging part, through overuse of an interesting riff, stretched repetition, or the vocals failing to step up to the plate when they’re needed the most. Vocals are probably the biggest detriment to the album, and it’s not really down to the fact they’re bad, more that they lack variety. More often than not the airy shrill that transitions the next booming section works fantastically, but I occasionally sat there wishing they’d approached things a little more adventurously. It’s not asking a lot either, as evidence shows a change-up is more than possible. “Dissolve to Ashes” is the only track that goes at the vocals from a different angle – save the hardcore punk styled section in “I, Vanish” – showcasing a really solid performance of fragile cleans that lift the track up into the clouds before having it crash back down to earth like a meteorite when the harsh vocals come back in again. It’s a special moment in the album that isn’t done again, and in a way that makes it a more treasured highlight, but this kind of outward thinking would have dramatically helped the songs along. Of course, while these problems are fundamental, they don’t completely trash what They Came with Sunlight does so well. The hypnotic basslines, obscure ambience, and well-executed crescendos more than overshadow the album’s inherent niggles, and is definitely one of the most enjoyable doom records of the year, thus far.

FORMAT//EDITIONS: DIGITAL/̶/̶C̶D̶/̶/̶V̶I̶N̶Y̶L̶

PACKAGING: N/A

SPECIAL EDITION: N/A

ALBUM STREAM//PURCHASE: https://shop.season-of-mist.com/saver-they-came-with-sunlight-cd




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user ratings (21)
Chart.
3.5
great


Comments:Add a Comment 
DrGonzo1937
Staff Reviewer
March 10th 2019


15240 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

I would have had this up sooner, but DMC5 has been absorbing my weekend.

Nocte
Contributing Reviewer
March 10th 2019


9387 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

Just saw this pop up in a reccomended sort of way and insta got on it. Loving the build so far

DrGonzo1937
Staff Reviewer
March 10th 2019


15240 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

Yeah it’s vibing my man

MarsKid
Contributing Reviewer
March 10th 2019


8939 Comments


Well-written my man. Sounds like this is a heavy beast, though perhaps lacking some variety. Might try and come around to it in the future, take a spirit POS

clavier
Staff Reviewer
March 10th 2019


866 Comments


gonna check this out, i'd followed this band on fb but forgotten why or who they were

Hawks
March 10th 2019


69170 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

Need to hear this.

Digging: Hecate Enthroned - Embrace Of The Godless Aeon

DrGonzo1937
Staff Reviewer
March 11th 2019


15240 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

Yeah get on it hawks, you and dewi will relish in this

Dewinged
Contributing Reviewer
March 11th 2019


15444 Comments


NANI!?

Glad you're liking DMC5 Doc, kept me busy for the whole last year ;)

Digging: Ioanna Gika - Thalassa

Nocte
Contributing Reviewer
March 11th 2019


9387 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

"Altered Light" is sohhhhh noice



edit; this is last year's Erdve tier.

OldCrime
March 11th 2019


386 Comments


Great read. Will check this out.

Digging: Moon Tooth - Crux

Dewinged
Contributing Reviewer
March 12th 2019


15444 Comments


"edit; this is last year's Erdve tier. " GodDAMN, those are high words.

Ok, checking it is.

Egarran
March 12th 2019


9553 Comments


Why did it have to be screams? I don't get that desperate singing style on doom sludge.

Dewinged
Contributing Reviewer
March 14th 2019


15444 Comments


Holy shit, this is abrasive af. Sounds like early Neurosis or smth. Only 1 track in.

Sunnyvale
March 14th 2019


1001 Comments

Album Rating: 3.5

Just listening to this for the first time, pretty nifty stuff

Hawks
March 19th 2019


69170 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

Digging the fuck out of this.

Skoj
March 19th 2019


1670 Comments


Thought this was gonna be new slayer

0/5 definitely not slayer

Digging: mewithoutYou - [Untitled]

PistolPete
March 27th 2019


4965 Comments

Album Rating: 3.5

"I, Vanish" is groovy af.



A lot of this reminds me of Cranial's 2017 album. Really good.

Digging: Suldusk - Lunar Falls



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