Earthtone9 is the best band you’ve never heard over.
I think I heard about this Nottingham, UK 5-piece through some random Kerrang! sampler years and years ago. It was 2 different songs off of their 1st and 2nd releases, lo-def(inition) discord and off kilter enhancement respectively, and I knew I had to own them. Amazon.co.uk being my best friend rescued me from a fate of not having earthtone9 albums in my life. Remember kiddies, this is way before that digital download stuff and if your favorite record store didn’t have something, you were effed.
I am proud to say that I own everything they put out (3 albums and 2 EP’s) then they called it quits in 2002. To hear what was to come with the Omega EP (Their final release) and “Amnesia” which was a surprisingly accessible yet undeniably them was so sad. It’s been said about so many bands before but earthtone9 was on the verge and if the body of music they left as a legacy wasn’t proof enough, I don’t know what was.
Earthtone9 was definitely one of those bands ahead of their time. Exploding onto the U.K. metal scene in1998, they didn’t fit in with nu-metal which was still going strong and they were definitely way ahead of the prog-metal (Isis, Pelican, Burst, Will Haven, etc…) craze of the past few years.
A 5-piece like no other with a veritable maelstrom of a vocalist in Karl Middleton, earthtone9 should’ve been enormous…if only they hadn’t broken up 9 years ago. Yet here I am talking about them less than a year after their reformation at a few European festivals last summer and the recent announcement of a UK headlining tour and an impending EP of brand new material with the biggest grin on my face.
This time it’ll happen.
For those who haven’t heard them (And I know there’s a lot out there), the best part of this reunion has been the Inside, Embers Glow album that was released last summer. This 16-track collection is the perfect refresher course for old fans and the best part, it’s completely free. Seriously, if you’re even remotely interested in this, you’d be stupid not to download the thing right now.
Melodic yet brutal with singing and screaming. songs like “Star Damage for Beginners”, “Simon Says”, and ” Serpentine Placement” come at you like a freight train while “0…0…0…” and “Binary 101” are experiments in expert songwriting complete with intricate build up’s and crazy time changes with hints of both Alice in Chains and Tool. “Binary 101” is one of the greatest songs of the last 20 years. Yeah, I said it. Magical and mysterious to start with a slow rumble of menace, the song builds and builds until the instrumental jam outro that finishes it.
If you like metal, check them out. If you like any of the bands I mentioned, check them out. If you like good music, CHECK THEM OUT! (C’mon Inside, Embers Glow is free!) And if you like them, help ’em out here.
If they don’t click this time, I might lose hope in the music buying public. Seriously.