It is appropo that the title of the album is “Revival”. A few years ago, former Killswitch Engage frontman Howard Jones left the band to clear his head. The pressures of success, touring, and always striving for the proverbial brass ring was becoming overwhelming for him, as it was taking a toll on his mental health and physical health. Take that shot in the arm, a complete examination of the inner soul and well being, and the copious amounts of adrenaline rush that Light The Torch has created with “Revival”, we are experience a full-on awakening with one of the premier, distinctive voices in metal today. This Friday, Light The Torch will be releasing “Revival” via Nuclear Blast Records.
Light The Torch is composed of Howard Jones(ex-Killswitch Engage, Blood Has Been Shed) on vocals, Francesco Artusato(ex-All Shall Perish) on guitars, Ryan Wombacher(ex-Bleeding Through) on bass, and Scuzz Sciulara(ex-Extinction A.D.) on drums. Each member of this group departed from their previous bands for whatever reason that it may be, found each other, and what fans will experience this Friday is a complete rejuvenation of four tremendous musicians that have total creative freedom to unleash their sonic assault and that liberation to pour their emotions into the music.
“Revival” starts off with one of the many bangers on the album entitled “Die Alone”. The listener immediately notices the explosive riffs that Francesco possesses in his guitar with the chemistry of the rhythm section that Ryan and Scuzz possesses. When Howard comes in, you will proclaim and fist pump and scream in adulation that Howard Jones is back and better than ever! There is a sense of liberation in the music, especially in the sense that Howard doesn’t always have to write about how the sun is always shining, instead in this track, we get to experience themes of self-doubt, a mind in captivity, and a soul in desperation. The chorus in “Die Alone” is soaring and more anthemic that a 1970’s stadium rock concert and Howard’s screams sound just as incredible to the ear as does is operatic, soulful clean vocals.
While “Die Alone” could be their radio lead for a single, “The God I Deserve” has a bit of djent feel(it’s subtle, maybe it’s just the grinding breakdown in the intro), which allows Light The Torch to allow the listener to peer their eyes in to witness another layer of the band. There is a sense of shame and guilt in the song about how the songwriter doesn’t feel that he deserves anything but the worst that is thrown at him. The bridge of the song really showcases not only Howard’s vocal prowess but the background vocals. In the instrumental break, the listener immediately notices how the band just gets really freaking busy with a tastefully done guitar solo and a Triple H sledgehammer to the chest rhythm section. The breakdown at the outro of the song, if only was longer, was a great way to close out the song.
We must talk about “The Safety Of Disbelief”. I love the intro of Howard singing, then it breaks down in the song. Francesco just completely goes off in the guitar part as the verse kicks in. In the chorus, Howard sings “I am broken/I will fail you constantly”, my heart literally wrenched into a thousand pieces because it’s how I feel as a Christian. I don’t think it was meant to be written that way, however, it’s a combination of reminding the listener to stay grounded, stay humble, and stay down to earth. Ryan’s groovy bass cannot go unnoticed in this track. This band will explode if they release this song as a single.
Light The Torch is what happens when a band becomes completely rejuvenated, this metal industry needed that band to consistently rely on once more, and Light The Torch comes to the rescue with that beacon of light with the torch of metal. Madness To Creation rates this not only a 10 star album, but simply one of the best damn records that I have ever heard. Here is the track listing below.
- Die Alone
- The God I Deserve
- Calm Before The Storm
- Raise The Dead
- The Safety Of Disbelief
- The Great Divide
- The Bitter End
- Lost In The Fire
- The Sound Of Violence
- Pull My Heart Out
- Judas Convention
Fans can find Light The Torch at the following locations: