|Review: Argus - Argus|
Label: Shadow Kingdom Records
Year released: 2009
Review online: December 7, 2009
Reviewed by: Sargon the Terrible
Argus are a fairly new band from my old home state of Pennsylvania, and this is their debut album on the fine Trad/Doom label Shadow Kingdom Records. It's funny, because when I first heard this band, I said "This sounds like a Shadow Kingdom release", because I know the kind of stuff that Tim likes, and this is right up in there.
Argus play a very old school kind of doomy Traditional Metal that is retro without sounding like any one band in particular. There's a definite Candlemass vibe here, but without the operatic edge, and a good bit of old Doomsword in the sound, but Argus really sound pretty individual. The one thing I wish is that this were heavier. The recording is very much in the NWOBHM style, and so the guitar tone is solid but smooth, without a lot of meat on it and very little fullness to the overall sound. Songs like "Devils, Devils", "From Darkness To Light", and the epic "The Outsider" are satisfying riff-workouts, and the vocals of Butch Balich are clear and powerful. I just wish the sound were a bit bigger and heavier. That said, the songwriting is strong enough to stand on its own, and the lyrics dwell moodily on Faust, Lovecraft, and similarly acceptable themes. Argus show tremendous potential, and this is definitely a band to watch.
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