Christian metal band, Gideon, have released their 4th full length album called Cold. Cold was released on the 12 of May through Equal Vision Records. Gideon hail from Alabama and have been around since 2008. They have slowly been making a name for themselves with their third album, Calloused, hitting 5th spot on the billboard for Christian albums.
Gideon is fronted by singer Daniel McWhorter. Tyler Riley provides backing vocals and plays the lead guitar. The rhythm guitarist is Daniel McCartney who also provides more backing vocals. Finally Jake Smelley is on drums. Daniel McCartney is a non touring member and the band are also joined on tour by Travis Higginbotham who plays the bass.
Musically Gideon play in the metalcore/hardcore genre. There are booming drums and simple sounding but progressive riffs. There are harshly growled vocals and a some cleaner, melodic vocals too though they are in the minority. We have choruses that make a little use of gang vocals and of course we have breakdowns.
There are 11 tracks on Cold altogether and they come in at 37 minutes long in total. Gideon’s message is spiritual and they deliver that message with huge slabs of heavy rhythm. The album is kept fresh though by the use of some very clever and interesting guitar lines. A little dab of creativity to avert any danger of monotony setting in. For the most part, it is a very accomplished album and sound.
The album starts with one of the best songs on it in Champions. A fist pumping, neck breaking tune with furiously spat vocals and a chunky, bass heavy riff. The chorus is more melodic, not quite clean, but more melodic. Great use of the backing vocals is made in the chorus to add layers of intensity and feeling. The same style is used across most of the album but always with something a little extra added to keep each song sounding unique and fresh.
Cursed uses a great sounding guitar line in the intro. Heavy backing vocals join in with the leads at different points within each verse and the chorus. We also get a glimpse of a higher pitched shouted vocal style used near the end of the song which I am a little unsure of. Machines again mixes in a cool, higher tones guitar lead over the top of a deep and heavy riff. The vocal delivery on Machines is fast and impressive. We get some pure cleans over heavy music in the choruses which sound good, especially when backed by the heavier vocals.
The Game has a stop start intro that also has a slightly faded effect played though it thankfully disappears quickly. It has another pretty cool guitar line but is one of the flatter sounding, more predictable songs on the album despite having moments. The same goes for Freedom and the half way mark and title track Cold. Cold is a nice little acoustic instrumental that lasts for around 90 seconds. Other than acting as a breather halfway through, it doesn’t really add anything to the album overall.
Watch Me Sink, Walk Alone and Pulling Teeth pull the album back to interesting again. The former has a huge sounding intro and fantastic drumming matched with the vocals during the verses. The chorus is catchy and feels huge. It may be my favourite track on the album. The latter, Pulling Teeth, is fast and ferocious with vocals instantly joining the track. Off beat rhythms and huge roars make up the chorus while the verses have lyrics spat out at an amazing speed. A slight melodic slowdown near the end leads into a big ending with angry vocals and big bass drums. Walk Alone has a slower, brooding verse with ringing guitars and thumping drums before everything comes together majestically in the chorus.
The final two tracks on the album sum up the creativity on offer on Cold starting with Scapegoat. There are still all the familiar roaring vocals and chunky riffs. A verse of echoed shouting spices things up with its simple drum beat backing. An excellent guitar line joins for the vocals. It almost feels like the guitarist is doing his own thing to an extent but it works. The album closes on Thick or Thin which has real groove packed into it – in both the vocal delivery and the intricate riff. The chorus is exceptional with heavy vocals being joined by quieter cleans as backing. A drawn out roar leads into a gentler, melodic section that builds into a big instrumental section. It really closes the album in style.
Cold is a good album, really good actually. Nearly every track pulled out a little surprise in either a vocal delivery, rhythm or guitar line. It really helped the album stay fresh and enjoyable almost throughout. There are a couple songs that could be described as filler but not many. Even those filler tracks had a little something to them but just didn’t hit as hard as a few others. As a young band, they are an exciting prospect that I am sure we will hear much more of in the future.
You can listen to Cold now on all the usual streaming services but try to support bands by picking the album up instead. You can pick up the new album, and find out more about the band from their own website. Check them out on Facebook and Twitter as well and give them a like or follow. You can also pick up Cold from the links below.
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Cold by Gideon (Equal Vision Records)
The Final Score - 7/10