Critical Assembly / Press

“Everyone knows (or they should anyway) that Austin, Texas is Music Central here in the U.S. and that is why I am always curious to check out any Metal bands hailing from that region. And for that very same reason I was eager to dive into the latest album System Reboot from Austin’s Critical Assembly despite the fact that I was totally unfamiliar with the band at first. As it turns out, it kicks some serious ass by hitting targets all over the musical landscape, all with serious intensity too. The guys, vocalist Donovan Hand, lead guitarist Garren Emerson, rhythm guitarist Rob Hicks, bassist Matt Olds, and drummer Anthony Stevenson, display a real knack for solid songwriting, arrangement, and precision execution of their rapid tempos and rowdy musical revelry. If you are looking for something that traverses multiple Metal genres and energy levels while keeping things heavy at all times then you should give Critical Assembly‘s System Reboot a listen.”

“Critical Assembly – Okay then. This five member heavy metal wrecking crew from Austin, TX is armed and ready to crush you underfoot. Their song submission strongly reminded me of High On Fire initially, before switching gears for a more Pantera start and stop chorus. Pretty groovy if you ask me. Similar artists include Lamb of God, Hatebreed, and Down. Click the link and get pummeled waveriders.”

“News report for the Texas Independence Fest An old cotton gin in Maxwell, Texas was transformed to a rocker’s paradise this past weekend. Music lovers camped out—and rocked out—for the annual Texas Independence Festival. YNN’s John Salazar shows us the sights and sounds of this year’s fest in the video link below.”

“Critical Assembly blend melody with groove for a disc that begins to define the new generation of traditional Heavy Metal. This five piece from Austin deliver songs full of groove layered with vocals that swing between a harsh rasp to a fully melodious quality that merge together quite well. The guitars are not without character, and give the songs an uplifting element that is unique to the band. The juxtaposition of the uplifting guitars with the pummeling bottom end of the bass further adds to the band’s style. The one song that stands out as an example of their sound is, “Invitro Virus.” This song is a four-minute journey of the groove and harmony previously mentioned. The opening track, “Draining the Flood,” gives the listener a taste of heavy edge before the signature groove takes hold and the vocals hold the widest range from nearly growl to the melodic. The album is a quality EP, and shows a band with huge potential and a style that borders original.can’t wait to see”

“I like this song. It has vocals that remind me a bit of Disturbed, and music that is straight-ahead and hard-drivin'. This is a no-frills composition that still has some musical surprises with its dynamic changes and variety of vocal styles. And it all flows together well. The song is very short, which is good because it leaves the listener wanting more. The musicianship is of high quality and I particularly enjoyed the drumming. I really missed hearing a screaming guitar solo at some point in the song, but the song still works fine without one. The vocalist has a unique quality of voice and a personal delivery style, which help identify this band, and the song-writing has a certain uniqueness in style, too. The production was very good and the big sound enhanced the powerful drive of the song. Overall you've done a good job of song-writing, performing and producing. Keep working on that signature style you seem to be developing.”

Leslie J. Bialik - Music Xray

“This band is exactly what you would envisage, bringing what you would expect from a metal band representing Austin, Texas. Just like the cover of their album, Critical Assembly is just plain and simple, no holds barred TEXAS F*CKING METAL!”

“Formed in 2006, Texas band Critical Assembly solidified their lineup in 2010 and released this album shortly after. Critical Assembly have created a solid metal record that borrows from heavy metal, southern metal, modern metal, and all sorts of sounds, all while keeping their own cohesive, heavy sound. At times all-out fierce and at others rhythmic and groovin', there's not one boring moment to be found here. Just as the music is quite varied, so are the vocals, which range from aggressive growls to screams to soaring clean vocals, all with a gritty tone. Overall, I am very impressed with this effort, and I look forward to hearing more music from Critical Assembly.”

Laura Walters - KVRX FM 91.7

“Lead vocals are the first thing that most listeners pay attention to, so a great performance is essential. Your lead vocals really grabbed us. We don't tag a lot of releases as having great lead vocals, so this is an excellent strength for you to have. We felt the instrumental leads on this album were tuneful, interesting and well-articulated. There's no overplaying here, and nothing seems to be lacking either. Spot on. We think your rhythmic elements on this release can hang with the best of them. Tight, clean and interesting playing.”

Hello Music