With the release of their sophomore CD, Portraits, the Extreme Metal band For Today prove that they are a force to be reckoned with and are not just a flash in the pan. While Portraits is the technical and blistering attack that fans have come to expect from the band, everything seems to have been kicked up a notch. This record seems harder, more intense and definitely more technical then their previous CD, Ekklesia.

The thing I like the most about this disc is that even though the band has amped things up they also have successfully incorporated a bit of variety that I did not find on their last record. Some songs are straight up technical Death Metal tunes such as “Isaiah, (The Willing)” and “Nicodemus (The Seeker)” while others such as “Immanuel (The Redeemer)” and “Elijah (The Forerunner)” contain more melodic overtones that add dynamic and depth.

There are even some tunes on here that are mellow in comparison to the rest of the disc. Good examples of this would be the opening tune “Immanuel (The Challenger)” and the instrumental track “Ezekiel (The Visionary)”.

I think these guys have come a long way and their maturity as songwriters and musicians is evident on Portraits. Add to that the fact that this is a really good sounding record as well. No matter how heavy it gets everything sounds crisp and clear and in your face.

Thematically, even amidst the punishing attack, For Today convey a solid Christian message. Portraits is brutal yet edifying, making it a truly inspired contradiction. I honestly enjoyed this CD and would recommend it without reservation.  [ END ]

Track Listing:

01. Immanuel (The Challenger)
02. Saul Of Tarsus (The Messenger)
03. Nicodemus (The Seeker)
04. Joel (The Watchman)
05. Immanuel (The Redeemer)
06. Elijah (The Forerunner)
07. Benedictus (Song Of Zechariah)
08. Ezekiel (The Visionary)
09. Isaiah (The Willing)
10. Talmidim (The Servants)

Run Time: 33:16