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The Collective

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Album Review

Instrumental metal will always have a more limited appeal than metal with vocals, but Scale the Summit's particular brand might have more crossover potential than that of their shred-happy peers. This quartet — two guitarists, bass, and drums — writes proggy compositions that gradually unfold, rather than brief heads followed by endless wanky solos. They're much more about two-guitar interplay, and even expressive rhythm section work, than about mere showboating. This is a crucial strategy that permits their albums — not only The Collective, but its predecessor Carving Desert Canyons, too — to be listened to from front to back without the listener growing weary. A piece like "Drifting Figures" lives up to its title: it's a multifaceted composition, starting out as a spacy ballad with repetitive figures from one guitar balancing long notes from another, as the bass performs jazz fusion-ish loops beneath and the drummer goes tastefully wild, but then picks up speed and becomes more rockin' — and that's typical of Scale the Summit, not only the complexity and multi-stage writing, but the smooth transitions between sections and between tracks. The Collective is a cohesive aesthetic experience, meant to be heard from beginning to end, and listeners with the (relatively minimal — it's only 45 minutes long) patience to do that will find themselves amply rewarded.

Customer Reviews

Absolutely Perfect.

A fantastic follow to "Carving Desert Canyons" Every song really takes you on a journey and is well composed. As technical as the music playing obviously is, these guys have made technical beautiful. There is melodic, there is hardcore, there is driven... it has everything you would expect from Scale the Summit.

My only suggestion, "Origin of Species" needs to be longer... i feel like there was more to that song at the ending and then it faded out... kinda sad.

All in all an A+ guys!


Thats the best way to describe this band. They have found the perfect balance between technical and melodic guitar playing. Some fanatic guitar players might get angry about that comment, claiming Technical IS the new melodic but, for most people, the crazy time signatures and awkward playing styles of traditional technical playing is dizzying. These guys can show off their amazing guitar skills while still making you feel calm, without adrenaline rushes to punch people or sending you to a mental hospital cause they melted your brain.

Amazing work guys...can't wait to see you in concert again :)

A good buy! ...

This album sits safely within the confines of scale the summit, presenting the listener with a spectrum of technical melodic phrases as well as beautifully complex percussion... The composition speaks for itself, however as compared to Carving Desert Canyons? These songs are shorter, less lead-driven, and the clean guitars here sound much more digital than, personally, I would have chosen, and for that reason, the softer sounding material has less of a third dimension than the rest.

I think this album is a little more .. safe.. than Monument, and Carving Desert Canyons.

I also think It could be interesting for them to go back to the loose style that Monument brought us.

Great album.


Formed: 2004 in Los Angeles, CA

Genre: Rock

Years Active: '00s, '10s

The origins of instrumental heavy metal group Scale the Summit date to 2004, when guitarists Chris Letchford and Travis LeVrier met as students at the Los Angeles Musicians Institute, then came into contact with fellow scholar and drummer Pat Skeffington, before completing their lineup with bassist Jordan Eberhardt several months later. Two years of rehearsal and sonic self-discovery followed until, at the end of 2006, all of the musicians relocated to Letchford's hometown of Houston, Texas and finished...
Full Bio
The Collective, Scale the Summit
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Customer Ratings