Job For A Cowboy
Sun Eater (1st Review)

Job For a Cowboy has been quite the polarizing band in their relatively short 10 year career. They rocketed to the top of the deathcore genre very early on, and gained likely as many fans as they did haters during said rise. I really liked and own their first EP, Doom, as well as the follow up LPs Genesis and Ruination. Their last album, Demonocracy, I didn’t like at all, and felt it was a big step back for them as a whole.

So here we are with their newest output, Sun Eater, and these Arizonans appear to be in somewhat of an identity crisis. This album definitely takes much more of a tech-death/prog metal approach, and the results are somewhat mixed. It’s almost as if they are trying to reinvent themselves a la Fallujah or The Faceless, as the tone and prog sounding solos demonstrate on the first 2 tracks (as well as most of the following ones). They have definitely tried to go for more of an ambient style, and the breakdowns, so standard in the genre they helped define, are all but nonexistent and definitely not the main motif here at all (so some of you deathcore haters who are still reading might find something you like if you give this one a chance).

Part of the problem here those is the vocals of Jonny Davy, which bounce between the overly annoying raspy scream of 90% of deathcore bands out there, and a death growl that isn’t quite death metal but isn’t quite deathcore either; listen to the album and you’ll see what I mean. The aforementioned guitar work of Tony Sannicandro and Alan Glassman is definitely impressive, and the solid mixing job means the bass is present and the drumming of guest drummer Andy Walker makes its presence well known.

Further adding to the prog feel is the fact that most of the tracks are quite longer than normal, with three of them going over the 6 minute mark. The best track of all, closer “Worming Nightfall”, is just flat out awesome. It’s a long, doomy, trudging track that shows the band can make a hit while they figure out which way they want to go with their sound.

And where will that sound be in the next few years? Who knows. Will they take an Opeth-ian turn and totally go off the map, or do they expound on one of the many facets that they have on display in Sun Eater? It will be worth keeping an eye on, as there is definitely some talent on display, the next step is where to focus it all.

[Visit the band's website]
Written by Kevin E
December 8th, 2014

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