California progressive death metallers FALLUJAH are swinging upward and venturing outward on new album, »Undying Light«. With new vocalist in Antonio Palermo (also of UNDERLING fame) firmly in position and a no-filler, all-killer songwriting attack, »Undying Light« isn’t the follow-up to »Dreamless«, it’s a massive jump forward. Whereas »Dreamless« wandered intelligently and resonated lithely, new tracks such as 'Glass House,' 'Ultraviolet,' 'Eyes Like The Sun,' and closer 'Departure' find FALLUJAH stripped down, razor-sharp, and emotionally charged.
Formed in 2007 when Carstairs was still in high school, FALLUJAH quickly commenced writing material that would comprise a 7-song 2009 demo, the »Leper Colony« EP, and a 3-song 2010 demo. Over the three-year period, FALLUJAH honed their craft by playing shows large and small, as well as finding more suitable musicians to play the band’s increasingly more complex songs. In 2011, FALLUJAH released their debut full-length, »The Harvest Wombs«, on Unique Leader to rave reviews. The »Nomadic« EP followed in 2013 and second full-length, »The Flesh Prevails«, in 2014. With »The Flesh Prevails«, FALLUJAH shot up Billboard’s Heatseekers Albums Chart, settling at #2. FALLUJAH not only impressed their core fanbase on »The Flesh Prevails« but also the progressive rock/metal community - Prog Archives awarded it 4/5 stars and calling it “[a] step forward.”
By this point, the Californians had proven themselves on the road, appearing on not just one but four different Slaughter-branded tours. FALLUJAH had also traversed Europe in its entirety. When the group’s third full-length, »Dreamless«, landed in spring of 2016, FALLUJAH were full-on progressive - ex-CYNIC axe-wiz Tymon Kruidenier soloed on the title track - yet continued to hit hard. Praised on all sides, »Dreamless« cemented FALLUJAH as extreme metal rising stars, having charted in the U.S., Canada, and Australia. For all its successes, »Dreamless« also paved the way for what lay beyond.
For the »Undying Light«, the lyric writing responsibilities were handed off to new member Palermo. Previously with former frontman Alex Hofmann, the lyric writing on »Undying Light« centers on an ego-driven and apathetic society as a result of social media consumption and reliance. Carstairs says each of the album’s 10 tracks is a snapshot of a disillusioned, narcissistic society. These aren’t examples of Palermo pontificating but rather portending the inevitable. In many ways, the lyrics posit the idea that we’re already living the horrible scenario.