Posts Tagged ‘Egypt’

Album of the day: Egypt – Become the Sun

Posted on Wednesday, October 3rd, 2012

Lovingly pinched from The Obelisk: The tale of Fargo, North Dakota, doomers Egypt is winding and easy to lose track of along the way, but what it rounds out to is that nine years after first getting together, the trio have completed their first album, Become the Sun. Their initial run was from 2003-2005. During that time, the lineup of bassist / vocalist Aaron Esterby, drummer Chad Heille and guitarist Ryan Grahn released a self-titled demo.

In the meantime, thanks to word of mouth and a few choice reviews, that demo caught the attention of the heavy rock underground, which resulted in a vinyl release in 2008 and an accompanying CD issue through MeteorCity. May 2010, Egypt reunited for a gig in their native Fargo, and now the lineup of Esterby, Heille and guitarist Neal Stein (who also recorded and mixed; James Plotkin mastered) have prepared a full-length debut as tonally rich as it is long in arriving.

Some of the material on Become the Sun (released by Totem Cat Records) dates back to the first incarnation of the band – Grahn is giving a partial writing credit alongside Esterby, Heille, Stein and Deep Purple, whose ‘Black Night’ serves as the penultimate track – but far from dated, the 10 cuts tap into 40-plus years of power-trio history to emerge with an album rooted in ‘70s groove but delivered with modern thickness and forays into jazz and boogie rock.

Esterby’s bass tone exudes a particular warmth on a more languid cut like ‘Greenland’, but even on the guitar led ‘World Eater’ or earlier ‘Orb of the Wizardking’, isn’t to be understated as a formative aspect of Egypt’s sound, even as his gruff, throaty, sometimes echoing vocals alternately remind of Alabama Thunderpussy, Crowbar, and in the case of the fuzzy ‘Snake Charmer’, a bit of The Midnight Ghost Train’s blues-based testifying preacherisms.

He walks no less a thin line between clean and more abrasive singing than the band walks between motoring heavy rock and lumbering doom – the expanses covered between opener ‘Matterhorn’, ‘Greenland’ and closer ‘Elk River Fire’ perhaps somewhat exaggerated in geography in relation to the stylistic jumps Egypt are making within the genre, but still indicative of the band’s interest in covering a wide swath of ground. Either way, at just under an hour long (58:42), Become the Sun seeks to encompass nearly a decade’s worth of progression, tone worship and bluesy riffage.

Continue reading: The Obelisk: REVIEW: Egypt, Become the Sun
Courtesy of JJ Koczan / The Obelisk.

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