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MP3 The Absent Light - The Absent Light

This fusion of alternative metal and classic prog rock portrays a young man''s struggle to overcome grief, anxiety and addiction. Harsh vocal stylings are counterbalanced by clean vocals, soundscapes and mezmerizing instrumental passages.

10 MP3 Songs in this album (35:37) !
Related styles: Metal/Punk: Progressive Metal, Metal/Punk: Alternative Metal, Solo Male Artist

People who are interested in Alice in Chains Opeth should consider this download.

The Absent Light marks the debut of progressive metal newcomer, Cayce Smith. In his independent concept album, Smith has crafted ten powerful tracks that flow effortlessly between genres, showcasing his diverse musical skills. The song cycle features searing riffs, mesmerizing instrumentals and layers of emotional vocals. What emerges is a moving portrait of a young man’s struggle to overcome deep-seated grief, anxiety and addiction.

The story begins to unfold inside a dark cloud of anxiety in The Swarm. On the second track, Smith unleashes his rage; Held Within is the spark that ignites the album. Harsh vocals and thunderous rhythms climax in a rush of emotion that is palpable and vivid. The intensity is unsettling – yet somehow familiar. Whether silently or aloud, haven’t we all, when engulfed in despair, felt this agonizing scream erupt within us?

While grief is something we can all relate to, Smith doesn’t leave us drowning in its wake. Beneath the surface of key tracks In Silence and Confession is an undercurrent of hope that ebbs and flows throughout the album. Painful memories that prompt The Onset of Fear give rise to abuse and addiction in Emptied of Faith. Ultimately, self-realization and surrender allow the flood of emotion to subside and settle into the tenuous calm of recovery.

There’s no denying the emotional charge of Smith’s performances; he holds nothing back. His vocals roar with a vengeance, yet they are clear, distinct, and counter balanced with clean vocals, ambient soundscapes and compelling instrumental passages.

Songwriter/lyricist Smith plays and sings nearly every note on the album; from lead vocals to guitar, bass, keyboard and drums. Guest musicians; backup vocalist Brad Austin, guitarist Tim Diedrich, and drummer Jake Steik, make brief appearances in two songs. The audio was mixed and mastered by Blake Williams (The Siren Studio, Olympia WA). The sound quality and production are excellent for an independent, unsigned band. There’s definitely an unpolished quality, but it gives the album even more emotional relevance.

Also worth noting is the visual imagery of The Absent Light. While album art has been dying a slow death for decades, Smith is committed to resurrecting what he believes is a critical aspect of the experience. Eleven original works of art that capture the essence of each song are featured on the album’s cover and in the 12-page insert.

Eclectic progressive metal is the perfect sub-genre for Smith’s mercurial melding of alternative metal, classic prog rock, Mid-Eastern tonalities, odd meters and dissonant chords. The music will appeal to fans of Opeth and Alice in Chains, but Smith’s innovative stylings give The Absent Light a unique identity.

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