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Scale The Summit - 'Carving Desert Canyons'

About.com Rating 3.5 Star Rating


Scale The Summit - Carving Desert Canyons

Scale The Summit - Carving Desert Canyons

Prosthetic Records

The Bottom Line

Texas-based prog metal band takes the next step forward on their Eric Johnson, Billy Sheehan and Steve Vai-loving sophomore album.
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  • Prosthetic Records debut is even more polished than their self-produced album 'Monument.'
  • Airborne compositions takes the listener on a floating journey.
  • Great juxtaposition of guitars and bass with channeling rhythms.


  • Despite their impressive proficiency, there's occasional repetition between songs.


  • Released February 17, 2009 on Prosthetic Records.
  • Produced by Scale the Summit and Tom Beaujour.
  • This is Scale The Summit's second full-length CD.

Guide Review - Scale The Summit - 'Carving Desert Canyons'

Houston’s Scale the Summit has made enviable use of the web, gigging and aggressive networking to gain a sizable audience for their breezy style of prog metal instrumentalism.

At times Carving Desert Canyons reminds of a less-concentrated Steve Vai and Eric Johnson album, particularly the swooning arcs generated by guitarists Chris Letchford and Travis Levrier. Instead of going for overproduced technical braggery, Scale the Summit—who self-produced and marketed their debut album Monument—are more interested in creating windswept ambiance.

As before on Monument, Scale the Summit jams in repeated ostinato cycles such as the dreamy “City in the Sky” or the adventuresome nuance of “The Great Plains.” There is, however, no room for improv as Scale the Summit is deadly focused to their task in fusing Vai and Billy Sheehan tapestries as harmoniously as the latter two clicked majestically on David Lee Roth’s Skyscraper.

With less glitz and glamour, Scale the Summit professionally follows tuneful melody seams and oodles of sliding notes, which adds to Carving Desert Canyons’ graceful atmospherics. Stamping down heavier tones on “Glacial Planet” and “Age of the Tide,” both upon which drummer Pat Skeffington rolls his snare and toms habitually, Scale the Summit shows keen aptitude for effectively dramatizing their wistful note sweeps.

Scale the Summit will tell you they didn’t get the full production value out of Monument they’d hoped for. Considering they were one mere step away from a larger-backed studio and engineering help, they have nothing to be ashamed of with Monument. Though they’re playing in the same proverbial yards of that album, their extensive evolution is striking, leaving album number three one to prepare your ears for.

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