|Sumo Cyco - ‘Opus Mar’ (Self-Released/Fontana North/RSK Entertainment)|
|Written by Marc Leach|
|Wednesday, 08 March 2017 04:30|
It’s always amazing when you go to a gig to catch a headline act but get moments where the support band blows them out of the water. This was my case when I went to see Alien Ant Farm at the end of 2016: while I was excited to see those guys, I left the gig completely blown away by one of the (many) support bands. That night in Belfast was owned by Canadian punk metal band Sumo Cyco… so, you can imagine my excitement when I got sent ‘Opus Mar,’ their brand new album.
If you are ever going to see Sumo Cyco, know this: they bring the thunder to their live performances and that same thunder is used during their recorded material. This is evident through album openers ‘Anti-Anthem’ and ‘Free Yourself’; it’s here where the listener is greeted by the scary vocal abilities of front woman Skye ‘Sever’ Sweetnam, who just goes from melodic vocals to ear piercing screams. ‘Move Mountains’ is, of course, the star song off this release, through its use of ground shaking drum beats and a special guest performance from Skindred frontman Benji Webbe, who throws down a reggae second verse and a collection of deep growls throughout the song.
The mixture of both reggae and punk influences continue throughout the album as made evident through the track ‘Brave II’ and ‘Can’t Put Me Out’ where the two sounds bounce off each other very well. Of course it’s Sweetnam’s vocal styles which is the strongest feature of this album, but the riffs from both guitarist/producer Matt ‘MD13’ Drake and bassist Ken ‘Thor’ Corke which help introduce some of the more fast paced songs, ‘Sleep Tight’ and ‘Rally’ are also very impressive.
As stated at the start of this review the first time I ever listened to Sumo Cyco was during a live performance and ‘Opus Mar’ is this reviewer’s first time listening to a full release of theirs. While this chaotic band are to be experienced live, ‘Opus Mar’ is a fantastic album where that that same level of energy the guys produce live is brought into the studio. It was almost as if the real reason why my room is a mess was because the band were here starting a riot… sadly not: it’s just my own mess - but none the less that’s what listening to this album felt like.
‘Opus Mar’ is released on 31 March.
Sumo Cyco tour the UK with Devilskin later this month:
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