Back in 2014 when vocalist Paul Green was revealed as Ed Gibbs’ replacement, the reaction was mixed by fans and led to some questioning what direction Devil Sold His Soul would take. Well after keeping us guessing for quite some time, the sextet recently dropped ‘Belong ╪ Betray’, and to be frank, it was worth the wait.
From the start the bands distinctive atmospheric approach is still in tact as brooding guitars ease us into ‘Devastator’ before Green’s abrasive vocals kick in with a hard-hitting impact. The characteristic of heavy and soft elements is firmly established and well-balanced on the track. It also allows Green to showcase both his clean and angry vocals in a strong light.
Next up is ‘Time’ which simply floors you by combining rich, soaring post-rock guitars with Green’s growling vocals and and a clean, melodic chorus that begs to be sung in unison. Whilst ‘Unleashed’ hones back to the bands metalcore ways yet fits in with the overall EP’s grand tone.
The bands instrumental side comes into play as ‘╪’ is soothing and enchanting yet unfortunately comes off as merely an interlude before the concluding ‘Alive’. And what a conclusion it is.
With its steady build up of sharp piano keys before Green’s euphoric vocals blast through with rigorous vigour. Add to that the bands overall tight musicianship, and you’re left with an outstanding 7 minute long finale. It ends in a gripping fashion, one that gives you plenty of hope for the future of DSHS.
‘Belong ╪ Betray’ marks a new chapter for Devil Sold His Soul, one which is richer and, at times, ambitious yet continues the bands trend of being progressive. With a UK headline tour set to take place in the Spring, 2015 looks like it could be very promising for Devil Sold His Soul and I for one will be keeping an ear out to see what they have to offer next.
‘Belong ╪ Betray’ EP by Devil Sold His Soul is out now on Basick Records.
Words by Sean Reid (@SeanReid86)