three-song EP’s goes this one is fairly varied but not exactly convincing
specimen. Obviously The Sign of the Southern Cross (TSOTSC) know more than one
style, which normally counts for a lot in my book, but my personal view here is
that they should have concentrated their efforts on one of them.
The first track, I Carry the Fire, is a sort of brutalized groove metal in the Pantera vein,
simply known as Southern Metal. Actually it’s almost too close to Pantera.
Almost. TSOTSC lack the spiteful anger of the germinal style; among other
things they’ve cut out the hollow pounding bass
drumming - instead going for a flatter sound all in all.
If You Find Yourself Looking Back, the second song of the album, is in the neighbourhood of
the ordinary, near mandatory slow/soft rock piece, that apparently you have to
put on an EP. This ballad-like song comes of as a bit dull, without anything
really special, for instance, a noteworthy guitar solo.
Best and last of the three is Doomswagger with
its deeper vocals and real ”crunch” (in lack of a better word). It’s an
interesting combination of Annihilator-like marching drums - and a wee bit of
grind - and the swinging bass and guitar parts traditional in Southern Rock and
If you are a huge fan of Southern Metal by all means buy this. Otherwise you
won’t miss much.