Grey Skies Fallen – Introspective/Along Came Life (Self-Released)Tuesday, 14th April 2015
Remarkably, the notion of re-releasing albums from digital to physical form is still appealing to some…like Grey Skies Fallen. (And this journalist, too.) The ever-reliable Brooklyn doom brigade originally released the four-song Along Came Life EP in 2010 digitally; same for 2012’s Introspective. Previously, they were only available through Bandcamp, but have now been packaged together for one nice and tidy release.
Grey Skies Fallen have always appealed more to the classic British side of doom than anything their fellow countrymen have ever done, which explains the bruising, but melodically-pleasing pull of a song like “Everything and Nothing at All,” where ugly, wrong-side-of-bed death grunts work in tandem with well-timed clean vocals. More of the same follows on “Where Promise Lies,” which finds lead singer Rick Habeeb pull off a nifty little While Heaven Wept-on-Novembers Doom combination that is more of blast from doom’s early 90s past than anything. The 21-minute “Introspective” finds the band somewhat in full-plod mode, which is par for the course when attempting to pull off a song of this magnitude. It never quite hits the mark, however.
The four songs that make up Along Came Life, while a few years older, are more realized, especially “By the Wayside,” a number that finds more earnest clean vocals from Habeeb. Beyond that, in spite of the somewhat wobbly production job, the fierce “Forever and a Day” and reflective title track stand firm in their attention to doom detail, American style.
And since the two EPs have been pulled together into one package with artwork from Travis Smith (Anathema, Katatonia, Opeth, et al), it’s sure be an easy nugget to grab for the band’s long-time fans. They certainly have ‘em – Grey Skies Fallen have been at it since 1996.