Larry Rogers| April 21, 2014
Begun as a talent show act, ElyMonster and Jonny-5 decided to keep the band going and recruited a bassist and a drummer. Where the name Armored Theory came from is a topic I'll be exploring in a future interview. Life has forced the band members to live in different places, hampering certain elements of their development – like live performances – but allowed them to work on an upcoming album. This did not prevent them from creating a very solid four-song EP they've titled A Fact You Can't Deny.
Opening the EP "Epic (So Metal)" generates some seriously crunchy rhythm guitar melded with solid drumming. There are some nice solos in the tune, but it's mainly a chance for the three instrumentalists to work together to create a mood piece that sets up the rest of the tracks.
I'm still fuzzy on where the name "Ockham's Messer" came from (again - see the upcoming interview), but the lyrics, as churned out by ElyMonster are solidly metal and angry. The track opens with some terrific percussion and catchy guitar riffs before ElyMonster launches into the fray. Rock solid metal prevails, but be sure to pay attention for the dueling guitars late in the track.
I don't think Shrek was the first to create an angry "Gingerbread Man," but the rabid giant cookie of the second movie could definitely personify the gingerbread man of this tune. This song is the most likely to succeed as a radio single. From the Jaws-like opening, through the cowbell and out the end, this track is definitely the strongest on the whole EP.
Closing the set, "Dead Man's Hand" exhibits some musical courage coming as it does from an independent and un-established metal act. It's got a great guitar/drums opening with a terrific beat, but when ElyMonster begins to sing, there's an abrupt tempo change. This beat change occurs several times throughout the song, and is definitely challenging for the listener. That and the tune's economical lyrics will likely hinder any radio play these guys might get. Don't get me wrong, it's a solid, very interesting track, but it's risky and very original (and thus unlikely to appeal to the radio-listening masses).
The Armored Theory sound is one you're pretty sure you've heard before, but that's okay. If you enjoy early Slayer, Pantera, late '80s Anthrax and the like, you'll enjoy these guys. Jonny-5's guitars veritably crunch, and the drumming keeps everybody in line. ElyMonster's vocals are somewhat reminiscent of a live James Hetfield. Armored Theory has established their sound, and can keep ginning up tunes for as long as they want, as far as I'm concerned. I can't wait for the full album, whenever it drops, but I hear there might be something else coming sooner.
You can listen to Armored Theory on Spotify!