SIXTY 8 – Before The Fall

SIXTY 8 - Before The Fall
  • 8.5/10
    SIXTY 8 - Before The Fall - 8.5/10


Release date: December 8, 2008

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Sixty 8 is perhaps one of America’s best kept secrets where Melodic Hard Rock/Metal is concerned. They may not have the coolest name, but their music more than makes up for that shortcoming. They came together in 2004, released an EP in that same year, and now give us Before the Fall. Sixty 8 don’t limit themselves to a melodic vein, they delve into the metal side of things and also refer to themselves as a Classic Rock band. The “classic” tag might be a bit of a stretch (and a hindrance) for the band, as they’re considerably hard and modern sounding.

With the exception of a couple songs, the guitar work is crunchy and intense throughout. The riffs are gripping and the solos are satisfying. Combine that with high sound quality and exceptional vox and you’re on your way to a great release. The first track, “Blood Red Sky”, is amongst the heaviest on the album. This song shows that the band is eager to go beyond the specified labels, as harsh vocals and a pretty speedy riff are showcased. It is here that we also get a good sense of the lead singer’s style.

Tryg Bundgaard isn’t afraid to reach for the higher, screeching notes. He does this frequently and it isn’t unfair to say that he sounds rather similar to Axl Rose. Make no mistake, Bundgaard’s not a knockoff or an imitator. He manages to have his own gritty, eclectic approach and succeeds in seeming like his own man. This approach is especially apparent as the album progresses. By the time you get to “Any Race of Man”, it becomes clear that Sixty 8 can pull off a ballad better than most of their contemporaries on the radio.

If ballads sicken you, the next track, “Over”, succeeds in reestablishing the rockin’ side of things. It is easily one of the two best tracks on Before the Fall and worth checking out if you’re exclusively into Hard Rock with a somewhat sensitive tone. “Better Days” is yet another strong point. It is here that the band shows a somewhat bluesy tone. “The Race Goes On” brings things back up to speed in a more metallic fashion. Then comes that other track you’ll want to look into: “I Won’t Play”. The way Bundgaard’s screeching leads into the solos on this one makes for a heck of a good time. He sounds over the top, but in an indisputably good way. “All She’s Ever Known” sees a lighter side of the band, but not so much so that the guys seem sappy.

As the album winds down, we see a more anguished facet of Sixty 8. The longest track, “Confessions”, comes off sounding like a plea for help, without being forced or disingenuous. “Killing Time” starts off with about ninety seconds of introductory guitar work before evolving into another strong tune about the hardships that come along with relationships. “Shadow” closes things out in heavy fashion, makes a statement about the impermanence of time, and the importance of doing something with that time.

So, what do we really get with “Before the Fall”? Quite simply, you get a Melodic Hard Rock/Metal band that isn’t afraid to tackle different genres and themes. There’s a nice variance in the pacing of both guitars and vocals. The rhythm section is solid for the duration, plus, the production is excellent. Because of all this, it’s difficult to go wrong with this album. Unless you’re looking for something extreme, there’s a little something for every hard rocker here. They may not be well known, but as long as they stay the course, Sixty 8 is bound for bigger things.

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