As far as debut album punches go, this is a pretty powerful one.
Having conceived a couple of EPs in the past few years, London-based Irish tech metallers Shattered Skies already have form, and their maiden full-lengther sees them ramp up the juddering riffs and well-produced, melodic gloss in sure-footed style. Trotting valiantly in the shadows of fellow djent-leaning peers TesseracT, the foursome take the downtuned guitar shtick with open arms, but plaster it with fresh chops and heady prog metal nods. There’s the frisky keyboard-led The End And The Rebirth, which showcases singer Sean Murphy’s saccharine stage musical heritage. 15 Minutes flits between mud-strewn, guttural guitar blasts and lofty hooks. This 11-track record’s waistline is bursting with soaring choruses and periodic doses of radio-friendly contagiousness, which, imbibed on the wrong day, might prickle some prog purists. But the jewel in the crown – the 11-minute title track that closes the album – gives much for any prog fan to chew on, with adroit keys, gung-ho fretboard runs and Haken-esque grandiosity melting together seamlessly to cap off a hugely encouraging debut record.