Independent Spotlight is a continuing series on Stewart’s blog. The series revolves around independent artists and bands sending their music to Brett to review. No band is promised a positive review, and all music is reviewed honestly in an effort to better independent music.
In this morning’s edition of the Independent Spotlight, we shine our gaze on Sault, a rising hard rock outfit from Richmond, Kentucky that was formed in 2014 by bassist Sean Tibbetts. Originally conceived as a solo endeavor, Sault later expanded far beyond Tibbetts, bringing on three other members to round out a full band. Their debut album, ‘Seeds of Power,’ is on the horizon. Here on the Spotlight, we’ve been given access to several singles that’ll be released on that LP. Let’s explore the tunes and see if they’re worth paying attention to.
Right out of the gate, one of Sault’s new singles, ‘A Peaceful Moment,’ makes a strong case for the band’s musical prowess. As an indie music critic, I’m often sent hard rock and metal that’s inundated in endless stereotypes and poor production. It’s a genre that seems to be fairly hard to break into and do something fresh and unique. ‘A Peaceful Moment’ is a superbly produced track that exhibits the band’s musical chemistry very well. Furthermore, it highlights Ben Riggs as a particularly excellent lead vocalist who's a real powerhouse.
‘Adonai’ is a single that’s much darker in nature, both sonically and lyrically. The vivid, apocalyptic imagery of the single is rather impactful, and Riggs’ delivery of the material is absolutely ferocious. Musically, it’s worth lauding the bass, guitar, and drums on each of these tracks. They’re thunderous, exuding sheer intensity. No performance overpowers another, though, and I appreciate that.
The third single, ‘Guilt,’ enters some intriguing territory. It aligns more into metal than hard rock, something that’s especially apparent when Riggs devolves into screamo-esque grumblings at the end of the hooks. It works, though, and it doesn’t over extend itself in that regard. I will say, however, that ‘Guilt’ is a four minute long song that feels far too long. It slams you in the face from beginning to end, and it’s a song that could have been far punchier and digestible in two and a half minutes, not four.
Finally, ‘Save Myself’ offers a soundscape that feels very similar to ‘Guilt,’ though not quite as quick tempoed. The vocal harmonies are a fantastic element that’s sparsely used to great effect. The song houses the best, most dynamic guitar solo of the four tracks, and at the three minute mark, the weight of Sault’s sound seems to explode all at once. It’s great.
I’ve had hard rock and metal features here on the Spotlight loaded with constructive criticism… it’s a scene that needs better acts. Sault is going to be one of them. This is well produced, well performed music that’s worth taking notice of if you’re fan of these genres and itching for new music. Connect with the band below.