Job For A Cowboy – Sun Eater by Gary Trueman

Rating: 4/5
Distributer: Metal Blade
Released: 2014

jobforacowboy_suneaterLine up

Al Glassman – Guitar
Nick Schendzielos – Bass
Tony Sannicandro – Guitar
Jonny Davy – Vocals

Track Listings
  1. Eating The Visions Of God
  2. Sun Of Nihility
  3. The Stone Cross
  4. The Synthetic Sea
  5. A Global Shift
  6. The Celestial Antidote
  7. Encircled By Mirrors
  8. Buried Monuments
  9. Worming Nightfall

Carrying on in the tradition for extreme music set by the Florida death metal scene and bands like Obituary are Arizona based Job For A Cowboy.  They might not come from the same state or even century but one is a direct result of the other and extreme music would be a dull place without either.  Faced with having very little room to manoeuvre in terms of pushing the music in leaps and bounds heavy or speed wise it’s been left to the current crop including Job For A Cowboy to refine and redefine what already exists.  This is something they’ve done well,

For a start there’s a clinical edge to their sound, something you’d normally expect to hear from tech metal bands but not necessarily to quite such a degree on straight edge death metal.  This clean sound enables the band to try out new ideas in terms of how the two guitars interact with each other and how they are tuned.  Gone are the days of a standard rhythm and lead set up, this is much more of a balance and thanks to bass and drums also turning their hand to some new imported thinking such as a little djent timing now and then new album ‘Sun Eater’ is quite the modern marvel.

Founding and only original band member left, vocalist Jonny Davy, is given clean air to vent his death rattle vocals, and he seizes the opportunity with both hands.  This is a front man for whom the word compromise doesn’t exist when it comes to spit out words into a microphone.  His undiluted style has been often taken as inspiration in recent years but is rarely bettered.  ‘The Stone Cross’ is a prime example of Davy manipulating his vocal chords and the listener into submission while his band mates show a clean pair of heels in the race for extreme music notoriety.

‘Sun Eater’ is a great album in a dying genre.  With all forms of music mixing and experimenting it has been left to a few hardy souls to carefully maintain a certain level of tradition while still aiming for originality.  Moshers and cerebral heavy music lovers will like this album a lot, my fear is that many will either not get its subtleties or will be seduced by the next big sound.  And that would be a shame because like Obituary decades ago Job For A Cowboy are the perfect portal through which death metal might survive for another thirty years or so.  How dull would the world be without it?

Review by Gary Trueman