Michigan-based Progressive Metal band Imminent Sonic Destruction (ISD) finally returns with an album after six years (although it seemed a lot longer than that). I just have to say – it’s about time!
ISD’s previous album, Triumphia, has become a “go to” recording for me, especially the first half of it – although at an hour and almost 10 minutes, there is a lot to like. The Sun Will Always Set clocks in 20 minutes shorter and it continues to grow on me.
After a 2 minute intro track, Arise, ISD launches into the meat with Fledgling. This is simply prototypical ISD from the syncopation, flowing piano, and instantly recognizable clean singing to the sheer heaviness and harsh vocals. It all comes together to make a compelling song. There’s even a drum solo! For a seven minute song, it goes by pretty quickly. ISD follows with Source, probably my favorite song. It reminds me of some parts on Triumphia. Certainly not a self-ripoff, but something that harkens back to that masterpiece. The odd time signature section in the middle and again at the end of the track shows the talented songwriting and musicianship of the band. Well done. They get a bit djenty as well.
The Core is the most aggressive song from beginning to end. There is a pulsing atmosphere to it throughout that is almost hypnotic. The guitar solo comes across as more straight forward until transitioning back to the pulse. Solitude is mostly what I would call a ballad. Beautifully done and flowing, except for the brief instrumental interlude in which ISD interjects some aggression. While it consists of two separate approaches, they work well together.
At 12 minutes, Nightshade has plenty of time to develop. ISD seems to take a measured approach in which they have a lot of ideas to explore and do so without it becoming overwhelming. I especially appreciate the rhythmic variations they explore during the chorus as well as the instrumental section they get to at about six and half minutes in. Good stuff. Complex and dissonant, there are reminders of Haken and perhaps Dream Theater. Altogether a great song.
ISD concludes The Sun Will Always Set with the title track, another lengthy song clocking at 9+ minutes. Somewhat melancholy in its atmosphere, this selection is a nice way to end the album. Truly it is the ballad of the record.
In my estimation, Imminent Sonic Destruction is a criminally underrated band, deserving of so much more attention, within the Metal community and beyond. Some years ago, I had the opportunity to meet and talk with bassist Bryan Paxton at ProgPower USA and had some great discussions about Progressive Metal in general and ISD in particular. I think he was surprised that I had been listening to Triumphia on my flight to Atlanta that day. While that album made me a fan, this one has solidified it.
Check out The Sun Will Always Set and Source below.