On this release Job for a Cowboy have refined their Death Metal further, adding a progressive sheen to their technical assault. Ambitious and bold, this is a game-changing release for the band in many ways, demonstrating that they are willing to do what it takes to reinvent themselves on their own terms.
The solid and modern Death Metal core of the band remains, but on Sun Eater this is complemented by additional ideas and different flourishes to what they have tried before, including nicely wandering basslines and progressive Metal explorations that truly flesh out their sound more than in the past. On Sun Eater it seems they have really pushed the envelope with their experimentation.
It’s really good to see a band that are not content to stay the same with every release; while still retaining their own identity the band have moved forwards with their style and embraced a more Death/Cynic aspect in addition to what they have previously done. This enhanced songwriting is apparent throughout this album.
The songs are complex, varied, layered and have a lot going on. Entwined melodies and eccentric grooves create all manner of intriguing soundscapes. The bass, which is always something I love to hear, is a major player in the band’s updated sound.
Note should also be made of their singer. Although he’s always had a charismatic growl, his performance on Sun Eater is probably his most diverse and enjoyable yet, with his growls and screams being flawlessly delivered and well-judged. His engaging vocal rhythms remain intact, even though the music has morphed and mutated around them.
Due to the above, Sun Eater offers less instant gratification than its predecessors, but repeated spins shows this to be a positive thing as the album grows on you like a plague, (in a good way).
Having successfully fully transitioned to this new progressive Death Metal style, this album is hugely impressive.
For fans of Obscura, Gorguts and the like, this is damn near essential.