FOES ‘The Summit Lies Skyward’

With their first full-length effort, these formidable FOES have crafted a pearly post-rock work packed to the rafters with piercing riffs, pummelling drums and impassioned albeit pansy vocals
Originality
75
Lyrical Content
75
Longevity
80
Overall Impact
80
Reader Rating2 Votes
84
78

Fiery debut from fearsome, fuzzy-faced four-piece FOES. Three years on from their formation, they forge a fantastic first album full of force and feeling. For alliteration’s sake I am going to say they hail from Farnborough.

The first thing that strikes the listener above the soupy opening strains of first track ‘The Choir Invisible‘ are the airy, impeccably well-mannered vocals of frontman Chris Mackrill, which cut through the quickly mounting wall of emo-dashed heavy metal with a crystal chopping clarity. It’s an odd combination that takes a tiny while to adjust to, like if Slipknot sacked their lead singer and replaced him with Ian Broudie.

Stirring single ‘Young Sovereign’ steers the album firmly to shore with a headbanging riff and supremely surging song structure. ‘Beautiful Fiction’ is lumbered slightly by its lyrics and acts very much the less successful follow up single.

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In the mid-streak of the album FOES show off their more sensitive side, to some success. ‘No Sleepers Verse’ is slower, spacier… somnambulant. ‘Sworn Host’ is straightforward metal with a more capering melodic bent. ‘From The Stillness Came Slow Bloom’ is very tender and has the subtle ring of ‘Desire As’ by Prefab Sprout if Prefab Sprout were ever a pulverising post rock band. A lengthy interlude builds up to the almighty bruising power of Orchestrator which acts as a perfect mid-album jolt.

The remaining few tracks are awash with riches. ‘Brothers Mortal’ is bright, breezy stuff and ‘In Standing Vigil’ is yet another resolute example of a grinding but graceful guitar gruel FOES have to offer. The album wraps up with a pair of titanium strong torch songs. The powerful ‘Pin Feather’ floats to a soaring peak with a pained prettiness whereas colossal but cuddlesome closer ‘The Everest’ is every bit as huge as its name suggests.

With their first full-length effort, these formidable FOES have crafted a pearly post-rock work packed to the rafters with piercing riffs, pummelling drums and impassioned albeit pansy vocals.

The Summit Lies Skyward is available now via Basick Supplies.FOES 'The Summit Lies Skyward'

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