If you read my last review you might have noticed me name drop Caladan Brood and recommend this album to anyone who was bored of Summoning releasing the same album ad nauseam. Personally speaking, I love Summoning and don`t want them to progress and Summoning never have to progress because there are so many other bands that have taken their sound and built on it, Caladan Brood is one of those bands. I feel kind of bad for comparing Caladan Brood to Summoning because Caladan Brood are a brand new band that has only released one album while Summoning are veterans who have been in the genre since the early 90`s. I suppose if you don`t want to get compared to Summoning, you should probably not sound like Summoning.
So far I have mentioned Summoning in literally every sentence of this review, the influence is painfully obvious to anyone who would listen to Echoes of Battle but lets get one thing strait; Caladan Brood are not a rip off band. Yeah, yeah, yeah, they are heavily influenced by Summoning but rather than copying another band`s sound they use it as a foundation to build there own, in much the same way Norwegian Black Metal bands built off of Bathory`s first few albums. There are a few key differences between Caladan Brood`s approach to music as opposed to Summoning`s. Caladan Brood has a much more rock based drum programming, which gives them a more typically ``metal`` sound. The clean vocals are also different, they remind me a lot of the Canadian band; Woods of Ypres. To be totally fair, the similarity could be a complete coincidence but that should give anyone a good idea of what they sound like. The biggest difference between Summoning and Caladan Brood is the guitar solos. Caladan Brood really know how to shred and it`s awesome!
Oh! I almost forgot, there are songs on this album! They are really good, well composed although sometimes they can feel too long (not much of an issue.) The lyrics are all about Steven Erikson`s Malazan series, which I am currently reading. To be totally honest, the only reason I bothered listening to this band is the Malazan based lyrics. It is undeniably cool to imagine the soldiers of the Malazan Empire marching across wastelands, fighting endless battles and dying for a cause that they don`t even understand while listening to the song: Book of the Fallen. A Voice Born of Stone and Dust is another highlight, I cannot help but imagine undead warriors sworn to commit genocide for thousands of years. This is a really cool album and you should probably listen to it. The Summoning influence is pretty obvious but I personally believe that it will dwindle as the band progresses and finds there own sound.
Curt's review: 80%