Chuck Schuldiner Project

Saturday, April 25, 2020

Umbra Vitae - Shadow Of Life



Umbra Vitae is, as many of you may know, Jake Bannon of Converge's death metal side project. The band unveil monstrous riffs and twisted vocals. They emerged appropriately enough out of rehearsals for Bannon's experimental project, Wear Your Wounds. The members of Wear Your Wounds ended up recruiting members of The Red Chord and Job For A Cowboy to come together and craft some truly punishing heavy music. The ten tracks they lay out here on Shadow Of Life are a veritable tour de force - stuff that's impossible to ignore.

What I find interesting about this record is that it touches on many of the members various projects. There are hints of deathcore, and other moments that have The Red Chord's trademark magic. Meanwhile, while Bannon certainly falls into a darker register on this record you can still hear him break out his hardcore frontman persona throughout the record. Still the compositions have a magical sense of darkness to them, really driving forward tracks like 'Shadow Of Life' with their grim auras and stellar production courtesy of non other than Kurt Ballou. It makes for an intense listen you want to revisit again and again.

Shadow Of Life weighs in at well under a half hour, but there is so much packed into these songs that you leave feeling very satisfied. In fact the short run time is a good thing because it ensures frequent replayability from a band who have really shown a lot of promise with their debut album. The high powered guitars and sense of DIY magic come together with moments of pure bombast to make for a record that is far too much fun to spend time with. Once again Bannon and his crew prove that they are among their generations greats.

Find them on Facebook!
https://www.facebook.com/umbravitaeofficial/

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