Scale The Summit


Written by: MN on 12/01/2016 22:03:34

Scale The Summit are a Houston, Texas-based band that are relatively new to me, but they were luckily introduced to me by one of my dear colleagues here at Labelled as progressive metal, Scale The Summit value seamless production and clear, meticulously built tracks that are anchored by a strong lead guitar, which supplies the bulk of melody within their productions. On occasions Scale The Summit become heavy as hell, yet in the majority of their numbers, they still remain on the softer spectrum of progressive metal, where a clearly enunciated instrumentation allows the listener to find and explore all intricate details within their soundscape.

Having been around since 2004, Scale The Summit are not newcomers, and it was especially the album “The Collective” that showcased a different Scale The Summit than previously. As previous albums would present the world to the technical wonders of the band, “The Collective” saw a more concrete, holistic and synthesized expression of progression, where the songs ultimately had much more potent effect on its listeners. Following up, “The Migration” was also a huge success, leading the band into further recognition and giving even more depth and variation to an already growing scene of progressive-minded metal bands like Periphery, Between The Buried And Me and Cynic. Recently, the album aptly titled “V” marks the 5th release from the Texans, an album I have learnt to appreciate after multiple sceptical listens.

“V” opens with the atmospheric guitar delays and a brewing intensity as the track finally lashes out into a catchy heavy riff. After a couple of melodic guitar dabbles, the track reveals a heavy intensity I had yet to have discovered on a Scale The Summit record, thus indicating a wish to add some raucous heaviness to the mix. Instrumental bands often struggle with maintaining a listener's attention, but luckily the progressive formula keeps us intrigued as the soundscape goes through passages of serenity over to intentional cacophony. “Soria Moria” sees STS allow for the rhythm and bass section to develop some momentum, and it remains clear what absolutely great musicians they all are. As a duo of my personal favourite tracks, “Pontus Exinus” and “Trapped In Ice” truly lift this album significantly, where the first composition is tastefully heavy, even quirky in nature, showing that they can still dabble around with passages that are not meant to be deadly serious, especially the thumping bass and clean-tapping performed around the end is just brilliant. “Trapped In Ice” contains a complete frenzy of riffs galore as the song twists and turns rampantly, eventually allowing one of the greatest (more gentle) passages to mark the second movement within the composition. “Stolas” is very spacy, and somewhat nerdy in nature, but still contains plenty of Satriani-like guitar work that is fiercely complimented by a strong heavy rhythm backbone. As a downfall, the song “Kestrel” is a bit of a predictable piece of music and for a short period marks a boring part of the album. Luckily, “Blue Sun” aviates the album to the aforementioned heights that marked the beginning. A song that practically closes the album, as the final “The Golden Bird” is but a shadow of the brilliance found in “Blue Sun”.

Scale The Summit have proven their worth by maintaining consistency throughout most of their releases, and despite the usual struggles of being purely instrumental, still retain an important spot on today’s prog-metal scene. Anyone who appreciates the more technical approach to metal will appreciate STS’s way of combining interesting song composures with dynamic instrumentation. Check it out!


Download: Trapped In Ice, Soria Moria, Pontus Exinus
For The Fans Of: Cynic, Bigelf, Dream Theater

Release date 18.09.2015
Prosthetic Records

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