The Day the Sun Grew Cold

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First of all, do not worry about the effects this CD will have on your health. The first thing the inside cover tries to tell you is that this album is so powerful that the band takes no responsibility for any broken stereos that result. On top of that, they recommend that children and pregnant women not listen to it at a high volume. Then when the album starts, there is some deep bass rumblings and hissing noise that would suggest that Rift is actually a Japanese noise band who could actually blow out your speakers and damage your hearing. But no -- seconds later they reveal themselves as the Voivod-inspired thrash band that they are. Not that there is anything wrong with that; Voivod was one of the great, forward-thinking bands in the genre. But the band does not have the songwriting skills to compete with the Canadian thrash gods, and the proof of this happens around "Island of Sol," the fourth song. Where the three songs before this one were quite brooding and listenable, this track is a crazy blend of the Police's reggae-rock and Luna's chiming guitar textures. This may sound appealing to some, but in the hands of Rift it merely stays interesting without really being that good of a song. From there on, the band hops back and forth between moody math rock and thrash metal, with little to suggest when the two will switch places. To their credit, they are quite good at both genres, and it is no exaggeration that when they want to they can sound just like Slint. But nothing here really grabs the listener, and the competent playing does nothing to mask the fact that The Day the Sun Grew Cold has no direction. Fans of this progressive metal sound may enjoy this band, but be warned that this is still a very young group who has not quite found their place in heavy metal.

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