Southern Front 'Death Throes' Review

Southern Front is a metal band that spawned in Austin, Texas during late 2007.

Their first LP ‘Join Or Die was released in 2010, and later followed by acclaimed EP ‘Seasons Of Hate’ in late 2012. Southern Front has built a notorious reputation for their powerful live performances.

At the end of 2014, Southern Front released their most recent album, ‘Death Throes’.

The album launches abruptly with ‘Face down’. There’s no intro to lead you into the song, it starts with heavy drums, accompanied by some strong and shapely guitar playing. Ward’s raw and powerful vocals joined the party, at times reminding me of Randy Blythe (Lamb of God). This track definitely shows, right from the start, that there’s lots of good things in store, even more so with the addition of the rapid and precise guitar solo, which, if anything, is a bit short.

This leads straight into ‘Blood of Christ’. A tuneful and melodious guitar intro, accompanied by slow-tempo, yet hefty drums, stops rather abruptly… then it all kicks off, with fast-paced guitar, and a punch in the guts from the drums! Overall the melody of this track is interesting and well-shaped. It definitely got me in the mood for some headbanging, or jumping into a mosh pit!

‘Burned awake’ is next up, starting off precipitously, with no opening, and just throws you right in the middle of it. The song is well-balanced, rhythmic and dynamic, with the vocals still shining through, and the bass providing continuous support. The track includes a short, energetic guitar solo.

Another stand-out track for me was ‘Go Blank’. It sets off with a slow guitar with, stable backing from the drums. The tune is lavish, tight and cadenced all the way through, disturbed, half way through, by a brief, canorous guitar solo.

‘The Void’ at only 49 seconds long, is still a worthy inclusion. It’s 49 seconds of beautifully composed, mellow guitar playing, which shows that the band doesn’t just focus on robust and swift playing but also gives attention to melodious, elegant and soft instrumental playing.

‘Obstacle Of Forgiveness’ sets of with expeditious background guitar playing before it fully kicks in joined by the rest of the band. The song carries on around the same sort of pattern, being speedy and heavy and then finishes precipitously.

‘Butchering The Bloodline’ is another song that is full of hefty drums and guitar, but with tuneful and memorable lead guitar. The solo on here is an absolute blinder!

The final track on the album is ‘Dead Horse’,with its pleasing and catchy guitar entrance. It is my favourite song on the album. It is so powerful and sucked me right into it… a great track to listen to before going for a night out with your drinking buddies. It’s distinctive, engaging and it definitely doesn’t disappoint. With a long solo, it is ear-pleasing, and also one hell of a swift solo to end, not just the song but also the album, on a high note filled with energy.

All in all, this album is interesting and flows very well, even with the short acoustic track ‘The void’, it didn’t seem, odd as it still had Southern Front’s style and creativity in it. None of the tracks were disappointing, even when they ended abruptly, they simply left you wanting more. I found that each track was better than the one before and surely, that is what you want in an album… to keep you keen and engrossed. Southern Front certainly do provide and deliver just that!

Southern Front is:

Zak Ward (vocals)

Jon Butler (guitar)

Jason Bingham (guitar)

Payton Holekamp (drums)

Eric Houser (bass).

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Review by Cassandra Jaeger Irving


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