Absence of Time


Wow, what a great album this US Metal acts created!
May 22, 2024

The day May 16, 2010 will never be forgotten by any Metalhead that was into Metal at that time. It was when the King of Rock ‘n’ Roll Ronnie James Dio has finally rested after a long fight with a fatal disease. And such loss was felt heavily in USA Metal scene, because his works with BLACK SABBATH, ELF, RAINBOW and DIO are seminal to US Metal scene (and even his family is on the scene, as his cousins on THE RODS and WITHERFELL show). But his musical heritage is still here, clear and loud, and can be found in many bands today, and one of them is the quartet RIVETSKULL, from Seattle, here with “Absence of Time”.

Metal acts of US Metal ways have a tendency to search for something that could align a clean and defined sound for each musical instrument, but regarding a more organic appeal on them. And they hit the target working with Jonathan Plum (who worked on the recordings at London Bridge Studio, Seattle, and has on his curriculum names as QUEENSRŸCHE, ALICE IN CHAINS, PEARL JAM, and others), and that was produced, mixed and mastered by Matt Hyde (the same one known for his works with SLAYER, HATEBREED and others). But everything was done with a vision: to keep the band sounding loud and clean, heavy and aggressive, but with an actual feeling. And what good artwork Josh Graham created!

As the words above state clear, the quartet works on a form of traditional Heavy Metal that is usual for North American bands, or in other words, it’s heavy to the point of breaking teeth, but full of precious melodies inherited from Hard Rock (pay attention to them under the heavy weight of “Isolation”) and a clear technical appeal (as heard on the shreds during the guitar leads). It’s something very good to be heard, full of energy and appeal, and fans of acts as JAG PANZER, GRIFFIN, RUTHLESS, OMEN, WITHERFELL, SANCTUARY, MALICE and others on such trench will love it. The album opens with the frantic and provocative “Hellbound”, a powerful and heavy song with a mighty and earthcrushing work on bass guitar and drums due the weighty rhythms. It is followed by “Isolation” brings something more melodic, with that appeal of the 80s when no one cared about if it was called Hard Rock, Heavy Metal or Glam Metal, because it’s excellent (pay attention to the excellent guitar riffs and solos, to its chorus and contrasts).

“Not Gonna Run” depicts again some Hard Rock hooking traits aligned with a massive load of heavy weight (and what great nasty vocals). And “My Darkest Hour” is that kind of US Metal song with contrasts between heavier parts (especially on the chorus) with melancholic and deep moments. Some keyboards ‘bottoms’ can be heard contrasting with the weight of “Eyes of a Fallen Angel”, a song that demands a lot from the rhythmic session (and bass guitar and drums do their parts with honor). And “The King is Dead” comes using and abusing of a weighty load from the guitars, where the seduction of the melodies is certain. “Swimming in Mortality” flirts with some Thrash Metal influences due the aggressive guitar riffs (but the melodies during the chorus are amazing).

“Time Will Tell” is another US Metal song filled with weight and energy, with fine vocals and backing vocals in many moments (and what very good guitar lead is heard). And “The Unwinnable War” is a massive song with tons of weight and energy that is hard to resist due its melodic appeal. “Absence of Time” represents a step ahead for the quartet, and they could be great in the 80s (when people was looking for the new bands and loving the past ones in the same way). But it’s excellent to deal with a band as RIVETSULL. Try it, and you won’t regret the experience.

9 / 10

Almost Perfect








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"Absence of Time" Track-listing:
  1. Hellbound
  2. Isolation
  3. Not Gonna Run
  4. My Darkest Hour
  5. Eyes of a Fallen Angel
  6. The King is Dead
  7. Swimming in Mortality
  8. Time Will Tell
  9. The Unwinnable War
RivetSkull Lineup:

Chad McMurray - Vocals, Keyboards
Mark Xavier Plog - Guitars
Mark Hopkins - Bass
Michael Robson - Drums

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