Roundtable Review: Down Royale – Sway

Down Royale_Album Art_03_RGB_1600x1600Label:  N/A

Release Date:  29 June 14

Songs:   11

Length:  46 Minutes

Genre:  Groove / Metalcore

Studio Albums:   This is their debut album.

Location:  Australia

WarpRider – If my memory serve me, I believe Down Royale might have been the first band ever to submit music to us for review some years ago.  Nice to see they have their first album under their belt since their Proving Grounds EP which you can read about here.  Sway is well produced and I can personally see growth in the band since that EP.  The album, though mostly groovy and hard-hitting, has some glimmers of melodic excellence such as with the self-titled album track Sway and parts of Inertia.  Mostly, your heart will be pounded into submission track after track.  Personally, I really liked the track Sway and would have liked to see more of their ability on the slightly softer side.  However, I can never fault a band for being heavy as fuck.  Solid album!  3.8 

RiffRaff – Groove, groove, and more groove.  Damn does this bit of groovy death metal/old-school hardcore groove.  Can too much groove ever be a bad thing?  Well, no, never.  However, at times I was wishing for some melody to break up the relentless assault of groove and breakdowns.  There are some atmospheric injections from time to time that helped me get through the whole album and add some nice dynamic, but a bit more would have been nice.  For what it is, Sway will be perfect for those who are in want for some super groovy death metal. 3.5

Irmelinis – Here’s a groovy and well composed album, and while nothing about the songs grabs me immediately, it soon becomes clear that the music has many interesting details that makes it very pleasant to the ear. The metalcore/melo death vocal style is perfect for the energetic pace and the drummer really shines. Like a mix between Soilwork and Architects. Nice! 3.5

ChristopherMammal – For me, 2014 has yielded some most pleasant metal goodies thus far. “Sway” is one of them. It’s an album of textures and contrasts with some really good tracks. Down Royale describe their music as groovecore. I’d call it evocative groovecore. The vocals and instruments combine excellently to create patches of light and depths of shadow. My favourite track, “And Then Some”, nicely demonstrates the enhancements Down Royale add to their songs. It opens with atonal guitars sounding an alarm that tension lies ahead. Rapid-fire drumming and the fast-paced, ominous music build up that tension, heightened by the almost frenetic vocals. Midway through, the tension breaks in ripples and waves of keyboard and a lilting guitar solo before the band plunges you back into the murky mood of anxiety that closes the song. The whole album is like that. I think it’s great. 4.0

A Metal State of Mind Score – 3.7 out of 5 

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About Reggie

Just a dude writing a heavy metal blog and always on the prowl for a cool metal show. I am also a family man...first and foremost!

Posted on September 8, 2014, in Album Reviews, Roundtable Reviews and tagged , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink. Leave a comment.

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