Evolve is the second release from the band Eye Empire. This is very much a heavy metal offering albeit with a few twists!
Eye Empire is a super-group of sorts with members coming from the bands Dark New Day, Submersed, and the Texas Hippie Coalition. The band is led by vocalist Donald Carpenter; he brings an interesting aspect to this band whereas he does a lot of actual singing rather than the “to be expected” yelling and screaming so prevalent in metal these days. Carpenter is a man of many voices, he goes from all out aggression to a very somber softness not to be expected for a band as heavy as Eye Empire.
I hear a lot of similarities between Carpenter and an early David Drainman, albeit without the psychotic aspects of early Disturbed. This is the case with his singing through at least the first half of the album, he then switches to a completely different delivery, almost sounding like a different singer. This album infact does the same shift as a whole. It almost feels as though the songs were either written or recorded at a completely different time. This is not a bad thing, it is however unusual whereas most bands tend to follow a particular feel/formula through an album.
EvolveÂ opens withÂ the song “One Day.” This is a great opener! It has a great pummeling double bass groove going on. It is fast and quite aggressive musically, having genuine singing over the top of aggressive music it is such a great combination. Whats this, a guitar solo? What a lovely thought! Short but sweet in this song, tastefully pulled off by guitarist B.C. Kochmit in a cool Zakk Wyldeish way. The guitars are very tuned down, perhaps down to B. The music is quite tight and precise.
The second song is called “The War Isn’t Over Yet.” Again a very aggressive riff, this time with a cool, clean, trippy verse which is a great contrast to the rest of the song. The guitar work is very well executed,Â I was sure that there were two guitarists in the band but no, B.C. handles all of it. The rhythms are multi tracked, there are overdubs and nice texture parts added to give the music a good depth and power. The bass for the most part follows the guitar giving it even more weight, however I am not a fan of the flat bass tone. The addition of a well-defined bass can add a lot more to the overall sound and here it is lacking. The drums are perfect for the songs, powerful, clean and busy.
Stand out tracks are “One Day,” “The War Isn’t Over,” “Rise (Wake Up),” “Weakness,” “Head High,” and “I Don’t Wanna Leave.” The aforementioned track is an excellent song and something that should be heard by all! We metal heads are known for our soft side! Great album guys!