Nima : From their debut album, 'After The Fire', from 2003 this Amercian quartet has been treating us on fantastic U.S. heavy metal and has showed progression with every album. The last long player, 'Be Gone', is almost four years old. Last summer the first sign came with the 'Ten Years' EP and at the end of the month the fourth long player will finally be a fact. But believe me; it was worth waiting for.
As already mentioned the band has progressed with each album and that is again also the case with 'Bury The Light'. The progressive approach and darker atmosphere combined with straightforward traditional power metal that they showed on 'Be Gone' has been proceeded. Only this time the various influences are more balanced, due to which the songs sounds even more spontaneous. 'Leave Me Here To Dream' immediately starts strong and sturdy. Soon the progressive influences come forward, but despite that the song keeps pounding. The striking point is that there is a much more important role for the guitars than before. Of course Tim Aymar's (Control Denied) voice again plays a very important role in Pharaoh and the good man keeps amazing me with his great voice and fantastic performance. The following tracks, 'The Wolves' and 'Castle In The Sky', are also up-tempo power metal pieces. The last-mentioned is a bit more striking due to its dreamy prog-rock middle piece. With the intro of the following 'The Year Of the Blizzard', which strongly reminds of Deep Purple, the band again shows a different side of itself, but still manages to keep to the typical Pharaoh sound at the same time. The following tracks contain all those influences and they keep the level up. Fast power metal riffs, mid-tempo headbangers, sturdy rockers, dreamy prog-pieces, sensitive vocals, aggression, melody, dark atmosphere, this album has it all.
Just as it was the case with its predecessor, 'Bury The Light' requires more than just a few listens and demands a lot of attention. The music has many layers and there is a lot going on in the songs so that every listen sees to new discoveries. Therefore it's impossible to learn the albums value quickly. Despite its complexity however, the album is immediately catchy, which for a part definitely has to do with fantastic production. Longtime producer, Matt Crooks, has made sure that all instruments come on their own and he has had a great eye for so that nothing goes by unnoticed.
With 'Bury The Light' Pharaoh has delivered its most mature album to date, which has the ability to apply to a broad audience and many generations of headbangers. Just give the album the time and attention to reveal itself and let Pharaoh take you on the beautiful, exciting musical journey that is 'Bury The Light'. You won't regret it!