F U L L . R E V I E W S


Shattersphere - In The Face Of Anger - 2005 - Self Released

Track Listing
1. In The Face Of Anger
2. Faithless
3. To No Avail
4. The Usurper
When it comes to the more modern efforts floating around the underground and on Best Buy shelves worldwide, it is really difficult to find the forest for the trees. With so many bands seemingly sprouting all over it is really hard to surf through them all to find an ounce of talent. After so many long hours spent surfing metal sites, music sites, labels, download portals, and endless emails, sometimes you stumble on a band like Shattersphere, a modern rock band that just has "IT". Yeah, that "IT" is really the most important thing. Some bands have "IT". Some bands don't.

Shattersphere's first demo, "In The Face Of Anger", has really found itself in my player for the better part of three months. I've held off reviewing it just to make sure my thoughts were in order. They are, and I bring to you this short little message in hopes that you will strut on over to the band's site and give them a listen yourself. If you enjoy strong, tough grooves ala Prong and Fight, but still like a good pop sensibility about the craft, then Shattersphere is the perfect band. Their merging of pop songwriting and furious charges is a winning formula, a brilliant creation that really sets a new standard for others to follow. While bands like Linkin Park and Disturbed struggle with the same scenario album after album, Shattersphere have found a way to take that formula and remake it, to sort of bend and mold it into a whole new portal, a brand new vision that is a driving force.

Certainly the opening cut, "In The Face Of Anger", will leave you breathless with it's huge stomp riffs and "gang" chants. But beyond that comes a dramatic sense of melody and understanding. The clean vocals are the perfect addition, almost playing the part of the calm eye in the hurricane. Next track, "Faithless", is easily one of the best songs of the year. The "hook" here is the fantastic piano sound, mixed in with amazing clean "pop" singing that moves into a more aggressive stance through the chorus parts. "To No Avail" captures some Thin Lizzy/Maiden styled twin guitar harmony, really moving the track in the same direction as older bands like Pyogenesis and Suidakra. The last song here, "The Usurper", moves quite a bit more atmospheric, a brooding sense of dread and despair before moving into a "new wave of American heavy metal" sound with some quick thrash riffing like Trivium/Bullet For My Valentine.

Overall this demo should please fans ranging from Paradise Lost and Farmer Boys to Shadows Fall and Linkin Park. Hopefully this is just the beginning and the band will soon land a deal. It is really a shame to see bands like God Forbid, Unearth, and Manntis pick up contracts while Shattersphere just sits by the roadside. This is a fantastic demo and one that should move the band closer to the Ozzfest stage where they belong!



--EC 11.12.05



Album cover: http://www.shattersphere.com/images/cdad.jpg
Band Link: www.shattersphere.com
Label link: n/a
About this Writer:
Eric Compton // Eric Compton lives in the most haunted city in the world, St. Augustine, Florida with his family and two yorkies. He has contributed to MaximumMetal.com since it's conception in 2003. His reviews, interviews and social commentary has been featured on websites like Brave Words, Blabbermouth, Metal Temple, Metal Rules, Ultimate Metal, Metal Maniacs and Wikipedia. You can also find him on his paperbackwarrior.com blog discussing all things action and adventure.

Maximum Metal Rating Legend - Click for Full Details
5 Excellent - Buy it and say a prayer to the metal gods that you were tuned on to this masterpiece. A classic.
4-4.5 Great - Almost perfect records but there's probably a clunker or a lacking somewhere to keep it from perfection. You won't feel bad about dropping some bones on these.
3.5 Good - Most of the record is good, but there may be some filler. This is the OK range where you'd search for the record on sale or used.
3 Average - Some good songs, some bad ones at about a half/half ratio. Could show skills but be dull overall. Redeeming qualities for indy bands are effort and passion. Majors that don't try or suck outright end up here.
2-2.5 Fair - Worth a listen, but best obtained by collectors. There is much better metal out there.
1-1.5 Bad - Major problems with music, lyrics, production, etc.
0 Terrible or an otherwise waste of your life and time.

Note: Reviews are graded from 0-5, anything higher or not showing is from our old style. Scores, however, do not reveal the important features. The written review that accompanies the ratings is the best source of information regarding the music on our site. Reviewing is opinionated, not a qualitative science, so scores are personal to the reviewer and could reflect anything from being technically brilliant to gloriously cheesy fun.

Demos and independent releases get some slack since the bands are often spent broke supporting themselves and trying to improve. Major releases usually have big financial backing, so they may be judged by a heavier hand. All scores can be eventually adjusted up or down by comparison of subsequent releases by the same band. We attempt to keep biases out of reviews and be advocates of the consumer without the undo influence of any band, label, management, promoter, etc.

The best way to determine how much you may like certain music is to listen to it yourself.



ALL FULL REVIEWS FOR: SHATTERSPHERE
CD
TITLE BAND
DOR
REVIEWER DATE
In The Face Of AngerShattersphere
2005
Eric Compton12/11/2005


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