Egypt - Become the Sun (IMPORT) (CD) Cover Art

Egypt - Become the Sun (CD)

  • $20.99

Origin: France
Released: 2013
Catalog number: TOTEM 004
Become the Sun', the debut full-length album from Fargo, North Dakota's Egypt took some crazy twists and bounces to get here but somehow it got here alright. After forming back in 2003 the band released a highly regarded 4 song EP in 2007 (released via MeteorCity), split up, were resurrected with a new guitarist (Neil Stein joining founders Aaron Esterby on vocals and bass and Chad Heille on drums while replacing Ryan Grahn), recorded this album, had it sit in the proverbial can for months on end. Now, finally it has shed its light upon a cult following slavering in anticipation, the band has made its thunderous return. The current Stein incarnation has a much fuller, hard rock sound at its heart, coming across more like Pentagram or even Motörhead than Saint Vitus.

From the opening licks of "Matterhorn" Egypt serve up a steaming dish of southern groove that would not sound out of place on the Dazed and Confused soundtrack. The bass tone is more in tune with the early 80s / late 70s with the gain turned way up and there's more dynamism in the drum work. Not fast and thrashy but more uptempo, more BPMs, more filling in empty spaces with fills and a lot more ride as a general thing. Even the vocals are more aggressive, smoke-blown and resonant. That all said, it's not as though Egypt has dropped the doom from their repertoire altogether. "Orb of the Wizardking", "Greenland" and "The Village is Silent" are all fine examples of the genre. But as an overall impression after listening to the album, it seems as though there's more "Stalker"s than "Wizardkings" here and it may be that that's just the point.

By the time the album finishes, it's cuts like "Stalker", "Hillside" and "Matterhorn" that make the biggest impact, these are the songs that provide the stronger whispers ringing in the ears. Egypt's return after five years and change is a triumphant one, probably not the return fans were expecting but triumphant nonetheless. Where one might have expected a low end dominated doom-a-thon, one finds the guitar leading the way into some unexpected places. In the end, Egypt have delivered a fine hard rock record that is a clear highlight of the first month of the year and just scraping the upper edge of an hour in length, the band gives the audience their money's worth.