Thanks to foundational acts such as Black Sabbath, Judas Priest, Iron Maiden, Venom, and Motörhead, the UK’s place in heavy metal history was set down in stone long ago; and ever since, Great Britain has been pumping out the metal almost as if it had a hand in inventing it or something (insert facetious smile here)…
Honestly, listing British metal acts from across the years should make any ‘head worth its salt swoon: Grim Reaper, Saxon, Diamond Head, Angel Witch, Tokyo Blade, Witchfinder General, Napalm Death, Carcass, Cathedral, Paradise Lost, Cancer, Cradle of Filth, Anathema, Bolt Thrower, Sylosis, Godflesh, Winterfylleth, Savage Messiah, Sikth, Monuments, Evile...the point is well-hammered home by now, yes?
But as time marches ever onward and as a list such as this never stops growing, new British artists will inevitably continue to rise and etch their own names upon the scrolls of their homeland’s best and brightest; and it is with this end in mind that Hertfordshire’s progressive/melodic death collective Countless Skies will deliver Glow to the masses on Friday, November 6th, via Willowtip Records.
Representing their debut release with the Pennsylvania-based Willowtip, Glow is the second LP to be issued by these hot English upstarts. Presenting a sound and style that would seem more native to Finland than England, Countless Skies have infused all the best aspects of Finnish melo-death with a surfeit of their native British prog to jaw-dropping effect upon Glow, and the end result is nothing short of mind-blowing.
Possessing a sound akin to the hypothetical mash-up of Insomnium and Monuments, Countless Skies are arguably the most stunning act to arise from the UK of the past five years or so - and Glow would become Exhibit A from this side of the debate.
Hooking you right from the get-go with the progressively delicious and melodically delectable “Tempest”, Glow now has its teeth in you and has no plans of letting go for the next forty-five minutes. The heaviness of “Summit”, brutal beauty of “Moon”, and sweeping sways of “Zephyr” keep you held fast and locked in the zone until Countless Skies finish you off with a triple-dose of “Glow”, parts one through three, that send this magnum opus straight up into the stratosphere.
Honestly, there are precious few words that can summarize just how palpably captivating the music of Glow truly is, so instead of babbling on and on in vain, let’s just end this review here by saying that Glow from England’s Countless Skies will, without any shadow of a doubt, be appearing on “Best of 2020” lists all over the world – including ours. Done and dusted…
To get Hated One’s top track, "Zephyr", from Glow in your ears and to whet your palate for this oncoming release, simply press play below, and if you love what you hear, share that love with Countless Skies by clicking the links provided below! Stay metal! \m/
Rating: 99 / 100 (A++)
Label: Willowtip Records (November 6th, 2020)
Genre: Melodic/Progressive Death Metal
For Fans of: Insomnium, Omnium Gatherum, Be’lakor, Dark Tranquility, Wolfheart, Mors Principium Est, Iapetus, Aspherium