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Ear to the Ground: Demon Eye’s “Shades of Black”

What sets this quartet apart from most North Carolina Thin Lizzy devotees is their penchant for pushing airtight harmonies through gargantuan stacks of doomy fuzz.

What is it about North Carolina rockers and their undying love for Thin Lizzy? Some of the best bands there—like the Cherry Valence and Birds of Avalon—tout two guitarists who lock into harmonious, Lizzy-esque leads. And anyone who’s ever played or seen a show at King’s Barcade in Raleigh has likely marveled at the prominently displayed painting of a Jay Leno-looking Phil Lynott mounted on the wall. Could this have something to do with the fact that the second song on Lynott’s first solo album was named “King’s Call”?

The second song on Demon Eye’s first album, Leave the Light,struts on a dark and groovy rhythm section courtesy of drummer Bill Eagen and bassist Paul Walz. But the real wizardry in “Shades of Black” happens when axe slingers Larry Burlison and Erik Sugg unleash those hard-panned Lizzy-laden guitarmonies so they can vine around the thunderous groove.

Sugg solidifies Demon Eye’s timeless radness when his soulful vocals come in like Ian Gillian crooning the band’s namesake song from Deep Purple’s underrated 1971 album, Fireball. But it’s Burlison and Sugg’s towering, proto-metal tone that gives this song the doomy muscle of harder bands like Pentagram and Lonesome Crow-era Scorpions. The contrast between soaring harmonic leads and sternum-rattling fuzz gives Demon Eye a sonic chocolate-and-peanut-butter alchemy.

<a href="" _cke_saved_href="">Leave The Light by Demon Eye</a>