Album Review: Light The Torch – You Will Be The Death Of Me

Light The Torch

Album Review: Light The Torch – You Will Be The Death Of Me
Reviewed by Paul Hutchings

There are few finer voices in the world of metal than Howard Jones. Best known for his time in Killswitch Engage, this second album under the name Light the Torch demonstrates his quality once more. The band he initially formed as Devil You Know in 2012 with guitarist Francesco Arusato and bassist Ryan Wombacher and morphed into Light the Torch in 2018 have turned in a tight sophomore album that carries the heaviness of previous work, laced with the melodic anthems that are a trademark of the band’s writing.

Although a loner by nature, Jones admits that he’s become locked in with his fellow band mates who he acknowledges have become his real family. “My experiences with Ryan and Fran inside and outside of the band truly bonded us. I think it shows in this album, it truly represents who we are as a group.”

Light the Torch’s first release ‘Revival’ in 2018 was an impressive record, scoring high on the US charts and achieving huge volumes of streams. I saw them supporting In Flames on their 2019 tour and in my view, Light the Torch were the best band of the evening.

Album Review: Light The Torch – You Will Be The Death Of Me

‘You Will Be The Death of Me’ is 42 minutes of top level music. Crammed full of heavy riffs, and bolstered by the incredible drumming of Whitechapel’s Alex Rudinger, the blend of melancholic melody and neck breaking aggressive passages combine to make this the most exciting album so far. From the industrial tinged power of opener ‘More Than Dreaming’ which sees Jones soaring cleans front and centre, this is a record that should appeal to most metal fans and will no doubt delight the band’s large following. The guitars are razor sharp, ably backed by the solid rhythm section. The use of keyboards which provide the intro to single ‘Wilting in the Light’ gives way to an anthemic track that soars high, a huge hook lurking to instantly catch the listener. The beat rolls, the riff sweeps along, and Jones gives a stellar performance. This is a band in sync from start to finish.

It’s an album full of anthems, memorable songs and surprising variation. ‘Becoming the Martyr’ is dark and brooding; the introspective ‘I Hate Myself’ changes direction but not tempo, with a savage riff pushing the song along. The band aren’t afraid to use the keyboards to enhance their sound, as they do on the title track ‘Death of Me’, with the keys adding texture and depth. Penultimate track ‘Come Back to the Quicksand’ flips to the melodic melancholia once more, the lyrics deep and personal before the surprise finale with a heartfelt version of the 1987 Terence Trent D’Arby classic ‘Sign Your Name’.

‘You Will Be The Death of Me’ is an album that will delight Jones’ legion of fans. His vocals are superb throughout but that isn’t a slight on his bandmates who provide quality musicianship. The songs on this album are delightfully crafted, and interestingly, Light the Torch have moved some distance away from the metalcore tag that they have carried for so long. Whether that is a conscious decision or not I’m not sure, but one thing is certain; This is a polished and finely produced metal album which stands up as one of 2021’s best releases.

For all the latest news, reviews, interviews across the heavy metal spectrum follow THE RAZORS'S EDGE on facebook, twitter and instagram.