Circle of 5ths

It’s a cinch that local metalheads Circle of Fifths are dominated by their guitarist: The familiar, heavily processed, six-string shank, circa 1987, marginalizes most everything else in the mix. A peak at Colorblind’s credits bears this out—axman Steve Mahoney both produced the disc and designed its graphics. What Mahoney doesn’t squash, however, may be the band’s most interesting feature—the voice of black female singer Shyra. Her level of intensity—more aligned with contemporary r&b—is often well below the din of crunching power chords and squawking false harmonics, which lends some cuts a layer of tension. But it’s when Shyra finally lets loose, as on the climax of “Closure,” that Colorblind chases the ear, rather than the other way ’round.