Grey Skies Fallen
Molded by Broken Hands

I was a fan of Grey Sky Fallen’s last album, from 2020, Cold Dead Lands.  I enjoyed their take on doom-death metal, alongside some progressive influences.  I did not realize at the time the band had four prior albums, a plethora of EPs, and had been around since the 90’s.

Molded by Broken Hands is their sixth album and debut for Profound Lore Records – truly a great fit for this band.  Mainman Rick Habeeb, vocals/guitars alongside several of the other members are either also in Reeking Aura and Buckshot Facelift, both bands from the New York/New Jersey area and all playing different types of underground metal.

This review is for the 7-song digital promo, which is 47 minutes. The CD edition contains an extra song titled “Severing the Soul”.  Again, with doom/death metal music you will normally have lesser songs, but they’re also lengthier, and “A Twisted Place in Time” opens the album and is the longest song at eight minutes.  With the band’s black, white, and grey cover and theme, it has a similarity to UK’s excellent Godthrymm, and in some areas, Grey Skies Fallen has a similar style in terms of the melancholic approach to their style of this sort of depressing metal.

The opener has a nice atmospheric buildup with strings and synths and once the minute mark hits I am hit with a very My Dying Bride vibe as well.  Bombastic with keys and heaviness and Rick’s raspy vocals.  This band, suffice to say, does not sound like an American doom/death band.  Nope-this sounds like this was recorded alongside the dreary overcast, rainy landscape of a small town in the UK, maybe Harpenden in England, which I have been to before, an adorable town, but I was there back in the early 90’s.  The heaviness of this song is apparent as are the progressive melodies and this is quite an expansive, yet immersive and emotive song to open with.  Excellent choice.

The title track almost begins the same way as the album opener did, but the guitar melodies coming through early on, really add that extra layer of depth, and the heaviness scorching through will remind you of the above-mentioned bands and throw in Paradise Lost for that matter, maybe around their first two albums, which in my opinion, is the best work the band ever wrote.  The clean vocal arrangements entering into the picture brings a more commercial, yet poignant sound to them.  The song vacillates with the heaviness and the atmospheric softer moments.  Excellent guitar melodies at the 4.50 marker and soloing going on.  The plodding drums are excellent and the clean vocals come in almost with a folk-like influence, or that’s at least what these ears are hearing. I enjoy how those tones fade out and the deathly vocals enter into the picture quite seamlessly and certainly, the varying tones are different yet both enjoyable on this album.

“Save Us” is a perfectly titled song for depressing metal, the smashing drums hit early on and the distorted guitars with a jumpiness, is not quite the depressing tone I was expecting, until the undercurrent of those guitar melodies enter into the picture, alongside the raspy deep vocals.  Some of those atmospheric moments alongside the heaviness also call to mind classic Anathema.  The clean vocals are also in this song and the varying effects these add, in terms of emotion, to the overall sound, is great.

Molded by Broken Hands best their last album Cold Dead Lands.  There are more interesting layers in this album and Grey Skies Fallen knows doom/death metal quite well, are capable musicians and at this point in their career to see them continuously add different elements and atmosphere is exciting to hear.  You never want to become stale or complacent in your sound and it is evident Grey Skies Fallen are ones to want to further and enhance this genre of metal.  Today as I write this review, it is very rainy and dreary outside.  It should be brighter outside, this morning, but it is gloomy and dark.  This album encapsulates the depressing nature of the outside landscape to a T.  This is a damn fine album!

[Visit the band's website]
Written by Frank Rini
April 30th, 2024

Comments

  1. Commented by: Oli

    Not where I would expect the town I grew up in to be mentioned. Death/doom isn’t usually my thing but I’ll give this a go, purely for the out of the blue reference to Harpenden.


  2. Commented by: Nick K

    Awesome review Frank. They used to be on my singers old label Nightfall records. Many a metal festival hanging out with them. Rick is a fantastic front man. Good for them getting on to Profound Lore. That is a wonderful label.


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