The appearance of the Treatment EP, the debut release from UK metallers Zoltar Speaks, was one of the very best introductions to any band in 2012, a collection of potent and intensive songs which showed the band as having all the weaponry to leave a deeply impressive and long lasting mark on British melodic metal. Now with the release of first album Save As I Save, the Somerset quintet not only confirms all the promise and qualities paraded on its predecessor but ignites them to greater and richer effect and results. The album is a masterful blaze of sound which whether carnivorously snarling or tenderly seducing is a superbly crafted and insatiably attentive provocateur of thoughts and passions.
Zoltar Speaks made their first firm steps in 2009, the band soon breeding a loyal and passionate following throughout the South of England and Wales with their impressive live show and the sharing of stages with bands like Malefice and Sworn to Oath. The Treatment EP sparked critical acclaim from the metal underground and more whilst sparking a greater awareness for the band around the country, a growing devotion for their captivating sound nurtured and expanded through their stage performances. Now as Save As I Save is uncaged you can only suspect and expect the band to trigger the fullest attention with its skilful furies and enchanting persuasions as the band’s ascent to the fore of UK’s melodic metal scene accelerates.
From the piano sculpted Intro, band and release erupts into a sizzling suasion with See You In Another Life, guitars and the outstanding fiery vocals of Louise Body enslaving ears and thoughts from the start. It is a tempered entrance by the track but one soon given a boost of aggressive adrenaline and incisive passion as the guitars of Dan Pratt and Jason Coles encase the ears in hungry riffs and sonic enterprise. The sinewy track easily holds attention from start to finish, forging a strong and tall stature for the album which is followed by the first single from the release, Last Man Standing. As its predecessor the song has a hard and rapacious intent to its start, the rhythms of drummer Ben Dean framing the creative guitar play and scorching range of tone and delivery from Body, her craft and vocals even more impressive than on Treatment. Though maybe not the obvious lead song from the album for personal thoughts, it still makes an accomplished and intrigue sparking invitation into Save As I Save.
The excellent I’m Coming sets the heat and intensity up another notch, predacious riffs matched by the dark bass tones crafted by Simon Roocroft alongside again the commanding beats of Dean. Like a raging fire, the song dances around the senses with melody soaked flames and testing rhythms aligned to those similarly predatory riffs. It is a formidable encounter which sets up the imagination and emotions perfectly for the adventurous Cannot Be. There is a swagger to the invention of the song, its melodic enticements and sonic endeavour whilst a stomping swing drives the intent and gait of the track. Together it makes for a song which is invigorating and musically anthemic but still a thoughtful and caring guide for the imagination as it runs with the engaging narrative.
The album is still climbing in quality at this point, each song bringing a little more to devour eagerly and be inspired by. The ballad Flesh And Blood makes for a relatively gentle persuasion next, one which allows a breath to be taken in the drive of the album and though maybe it does slip from the heady heights set it is a beautifully crafted and skilled attraction which makes a flavoursome spice for the strong appetite already awoken by the album. That gulp for air is needed in preparation for Face The Claymore, the track stepping forward to rabidly ravage and ignite the passions. Intensively aggressive and almost bordering malevolent in its attack, the track is a glorious merger of harsh and melodic adventure, a brawling tempest which brings a further rigorous diversity and tormented energy to the release.
Through the magnetic Take It Away, an enthralling evolving anthem with a solo seemingly soaked in the finest Eagles seeding, the smouldering ballad Braver, and the devastating Nothing In The World, the band continues to incite the fullest satisfaction and strongest emotions for its offering, the last of the three a dazzling display of vocal diversity, clean and spiteful declarations storming through its core with Coles providing growls to compliment and inspire equally extreme and passionate attacks from Body.
Completed by the enjoyably imposing and creatively exploratory I Can, I Can’t, its aggression and lingering melodies pure enslavement, and the constantly building climactic Treatment, the album is a tremendous encounter. As powerful and impressive as it is Save As I Save also suggests that there is much more to come from Zoltar Speaks, an even stronger uniqueness inside which is something to keenly anticipate and get excited over.
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