Written by: BV on 16/09/2014 14:07:36

I first stumbled upon SEA by pure coincidence, really, as I just happened to be following them and another band around for the duration of a day at local venue BETA in order to write a feature article. However, following their performance I had quietly been waiting in some sort of mild anticipation for what would eventually become of their material which, at that time, seemed promising but still a fair bit unpolished. Now, close to a year later, I guess it’s time to see what the outcome is like.

Album opener and first single off the album, “Sorry to Be Sane”, is kind of the embodiment of everything that is SEA, with its bountiful riffing, the grand roars of the vocal work, dual guitar leads and a low-end packing a more than reasonable punch. It also contains another aspect of SEA which is not to be ignored – the charming, yet hugely cliché-laden vibe portrayed not only by the song itself but also by the accompanying video. I mean, it’s all fair game since the song itself is really quite huge and could be enormously fitting for an outfit of remarkably greater popularity than what they seem to have at the moment. Cliché or not, however, the riffs and lyrics for “Sorry to Be Sane” are well-written, but do lean quite heavily on their influences, which is obviously to be expected these days.

“Eyes of Sedona” came as a sort of surprise, though, in the sense that it starts off as an endearing ballad or - low-key track at the very least. However, the carefully orchestrated dynamics of the track makes it, by far, the most compelling track of this debut as it gradually progresses from heavy melancholy and subtle riffs to a full-on onslaught reminiscent of Deep Purple at their peak, albeit a tad heavier in both production and dynamics (the main riff from Highway Star certainly seems to spring to mind, when focusing on the guitar work).

“Aeon” serves as the odd one out on the album, seeing as it conveys the single introverted moment on the album. Being an acoustic interlude it naturally stands out, but it also gives the album a well-deserved breather from the onslaught of heaviness and twin guitar leads that seems to dominate the soundscape from start to finish. That “Aeon” probably contains some of the tastiest guitar work on the album is not a fact to be taken lightly either.

In essence I guess you could say that SEA have delivered on most of their material’s promise throughout this debut. Long-runner “Ride On”, however, displays how their proficiency in build-ups is not always an entirely good thing though. Subtle, as the build-up may very well be initially, the track soon seems a tad bit unfocused, as all the individual parts of the track seem very compelling, yet the final result seems a bit hard to get through on the first few listens. For all the heroic imagery the soundscape conveys, it still doesn’t stand out as the total highlight I was somehow expecting it to be. With that said, however, SEA have still created a rock solid debut that will serve as a crucial foundation for their continued development. The chops are most certainly there – now they just need to hone their craft a tad more. b>

Download: Sorry to Be Sane, Aeon, Eyes of Sedona
For The Fans Of: Bite the Bullet, Dead Lord, Thin Lizzy
Listen: Facebook

Release date 15.09.2014
Mighty Music

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