Mixing modern metal, metalcore, thrash metal, nu-metal, and groove metal into their sound, this is an enjoyable romp through a landscape that sees many different complementary influences touched upon.
The result is an album that provides some enjoyable songs across its playing time, all of which are in a recognisable format and style, but most of which have more than enough of their own personality to be listenable in their own right.
In some ways The World Away is a synthesis of the American and European styles; melding together the NWOAHM, (Killswitch Engage, for example), with a more classically metallic European flavour, (Soilwork spring to mind). This is added to by a 90s nu-metal influence, (think American Headcharge and Slipknot), that honestly adds a spark and energy to this, rather than sounding dated or generic as you might cynically expect.
Even though you can hear elements of the aforementioned bands, (and others), in this work, these are only reference points; The Shape don’t actually overly sound like any of them for the most part, which is a great thing. The band have managed to shape, (ahem), their influences to their own metallic tastes.
I haven’t really commented on the thrash influences yet, either. These run deeper than your usual NWOAHM tokenism, and are probably, on reflection, a deeper influence on The Shape than the NWOAHM. I hear a bit of Testament and even a touch of Kreator in some of the riffs, leads and solos, (although it should be noted that this should be taken in the context of the rest of the band’s influences).
And then you have other songs that embrace more of an alternative metal viewpoint too. And that’s without touching on the tracks that are essentially ballads. Yes, there’s quite a bit of diverse material on The World Away. All of the band’s different proclivities are expressed as well as anything else, and also work with the rest of the material well.
So, The Shape have produced quite a varied, wide-ranging, and well-rounded release with The World Away. Catchy and memorable, the band are to be commended for organising their various influences into music that has its own personality and flavour, and The World Away is a very good listen for anyone into alternative metal.
Check this out.