Album Review: Devil Sold His Soul – Empire of Light
It’s September, which means summer is officially over. It’s time to put away those pop-punk songs, radio-friendly alternative anthems, and prepare yourself for the colder months, because winter is coming. And the thing about winter is that it suits the mood perfectly for that most majestic genre – post-metal.
The first thing that really strikes you listening to ‘Empire Of Light’ though is just how accessible it is. At 11 tracks and running for just under an hour, there are no outlandishly long songs, yet each track has enough space to breathe and properly take flight before the next one comes along to take you on another journey. It’s very easy to listen to Ed Gibbs’ passionate vocal delivery and get lost in his voice, guiding you through the album one step at a time. The vocal melodies don’t always end how you want them to, but they end how you need them to.
That’s not to say this a heavy-free zone. ‘VIII’ in particular is a headbanger of monumental proportions, yet manages to add more beauty to the overall narrative. Elsewhere, there are little things that are so subtle and will take a sharp ear to appreciate, yet they are key to understanding the majesty of ‘Empire Of Light’ – the last chord in ‘The Verge’ will give you shivers and make you feel at peace, before the sprawling ‘End of Days’ grabs your hand for one more go.
In this reviewer’s opinion ‘Empire Of Light’ is one of the best releases this year – it has been a long time since listening to a whole album in one sitting felt so satisfying on every repeated listen. There is a perfect mix of everything, from post-metal structures to elegant vocal hooks that will keep you entranced listen upon listen. In a word – stunning.