Unleash The Archers
Abyss


4.0
excellent

Review

by parkercr00k USER (2 Reviews)
September 20th, 2020 | 13 replies


Release Date: 08/21/2020 | Tracklist

Review Summary: Unleash the Archers' career is far and away from plummeting into the abyss. This is an excellent sequel to Apex and a splendid modern power metal album.

I don’t have much experience listening to power metal, but after hearing Apex a few years back, Unleash the Archers helped me develop quite a fondness for it and them. I’m sure I’m not alone in this either. Apex was Unleash the Archers’ first album to break into the billboard charts, peaking at No. 3 on the iTunes metal charts back in 2017. I believe this was because the album created a world that was catered to both fantasy lovers and metal lovers with it’s excellent musicianship and fun storytelling. Furthermore, Brittney Hayes (a.k.a Brittney Slayes, which she most certainly does when it comes to vocals in this band), is such a lovable front-woman with a powerful voice fit for her genre. Grant Truesdell’s harsh vocals add a nice touch of melo-death not typically found in power metal bands, helping UTA to stand out from their peers. Considering my obvious enjoyment of Apex, I was excited to hear about another album coming out this year.

Abyss is a direct sequel to 2017’s Apex, following the Immortal’s journey to find freedom, but this time in space! The story this time is moreso centered around the Matriarch’s grandson, who is seeking revenge for the death of his father (previously seen in the song “Earth and Ashes”), with our protagonist’s help. The story unfolds smoothly throughout the album, with a majority of the action happening after the first few songs and before the last few (the beginning and the end are more centered around character development and inner dialogue). The musicianship on this album is excellent. Grant, Scott, and Andrew all show great proficiency on their instruments with tightness and precision and face-melting solos dispersed throughout. Brittney sounds just as powerful and dynamic as ever, specifically on tracks such as “Soulbound”, “Faster than Light”, and “The Wind that Shapes the Land.” The tracks on this album are never repetitive and all have something that makes them unique and memorable, with only slight occasional meandering on tracks such as “Legacy.” Abyss seems to make more use of Grant’s harsh vocals than Apex, mostly to distinguish the dialogue of the Matriarch from the Immortal or the grandson, which I think is very creative and helps the albums to feel more varied. Another thing that sets Abyss apart is the frequent layering of Brittney’s vocals on various tracks. This is done extremely effectively. Songs like “Legacy” and “Through Stars” feel very grandiose and enjoyable to listen to as a result.

This is overall another excellent album by Unleash the Archers. My only small gripe with Abyss if I had to pick one would be the mixing. The guitars aren’t as prominent as they were on Apex, sometimes being overshadowed by Brittney’s singing. This doesn’t take away too much enjoyment from the album, but it leaves the overall sound feeling less punchy and powerful. This is also exacerbated by the more frequent use of synthesizers on this album. Some people may like this mixing better though, it’s more of a preference thing I think. In my opinion, though, the mix makes Abyss not sound near as heavy as UTA’s last album. Songs like “Cleanse the Bloodlines” would make me want to bash my skull through the floor and Abyss just doesn’t have that as much. Nevertheless, Unleash the Archers are cementing themselves as a splendid modern power metal act with this release and I’m very much looking forward to what ways they’ll continue to progress and mature as a band. If you can, listen to this album front to back. It makes the experience much more enjoyable because of the flow of the songs. But if I had to pick a few standout favorites to listen to, I’d recommend “Abyss”, “Soulbound”, and the epic “The Wind that Shapes the Land.”


user ratings (55)
3.6
great


Comments:Add a Comment 
bloc
September 20th 2020


63567 Comments


Big hyped to hear this

Digging: Phoxjaw - Royal Swan

TheNotrap
Contributing Reviewer
September 21st 2020


15111 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

I'm glad the album has been reviewed, have a pos.



Good stuff. Abyss, Legacy and Soulbound are my favorite tracks.

Digging: Wake - Confluence

bloc
September 21st 2020


63567 Comments


The guitar work on this is godly

solrage
September 21st 2020


179 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

Good review, if a bit short. I don't think this is quite up to the level of Apex, but it's still a great power metal album and probably as good as the genre gets these days. The Wind That Shapes the Land is probably the best song they've done yet. I just wish the rest of the album was on that same level. Soulbound would make a great single (if it isn't one already). I'll also echo what bloc says: guitar work is godly on both this and the predecessor. Even without Britney these guys would be a powerhouse band on the strength of their guitar playing alone.

decisions
September 21st 2020


708 Comments


Legacy is a great track.

parkercr00k
September 22nd 2020


2 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

This is my first review so feedback is appreciated also after more listening the wind that shapes the land might be one of UTA’s best tracks in their discography. It really is a journey

Poet
September 23rd 2020


6083 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

Good first review. The album rules and the band has been the best Power Metal band in the world for about five years now.



The issues with the mixing and the overabundance of synths (which I like on here a lot) is due to the lack of bass in the mix. They don't have a full time bassist anymore and it seems like it got pushed to the very back where you can hardly hear it.

Storm In A Teacup
September 24th 2020


30743 Comments


great first review!

Digging: Envy - The Fallen Crimson

Dewinged
Contributing Reviewer
September 24th 2020


21905 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0 | Sound Off

Sweet I was planning to review this but life happened. Album's FUN.

Digging: Crippled Black Phoenix - Ellengaest

joshieboy
September 24th 2020


7800 Comments

Album Rating: 3.5

Only heard Faster Than Light but that was a great tune. Will check this

Digging: Movements - No Good Left To Give

TundraL5Z
September 30th 2020


5162 Comments

Album Rating: 4.5

why didn't I know this had a review lol, good write up

Digging: The Ocean - Phanerozoic II: Mesozoic | Cenozoic

bloodshy
October 2nd 2020


2436 Comments


https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=kYe3YUo8FLk
one of my favorite youtube reactors, chase, did a pretty cool interview with the lead singer. if anyone is interested.

Digging: HEALTH - DISCO4 :: Part I

Storm In A Teacup
October 2nd 2020


30743 Comments


great name for a band tho



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