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Lost Soul is a Polish technical death metal band with a sound catering to fans of Behemoth, Hate, and Necrophagist. This is one powerful band across every spectrum of traditional technical death metal, and they make plenty of welcome improvements to their mixing and sound with their fourth full-length, Immerse in Infinity. This is a great record for many reasons, but one that will be immediately noticeable to listeners is its listenability. This is the most well-mastered and well-executed release yet, making it the definitive Lost Soul album for old fans and newcomers alike. Between the studio layering to the superior song structuring, Immerse in Infinity is the band at their very best -- and they've got quite a bit to offer.
The first notable aspect, from listening to the first few seconds of album opener "Revival", is the atmosphere of the album. Listening to the beginning of this track, your first impression is that of a band that values atmospheric samples and recordings. Well, those really don't come up... ever. "Revival" is the only track that uses a passage like that, to the best of my knowledge. The openings and closings of other tracks have a nice sci-fi feel to them, but other than the occasional synth-and-string pairings, that's just the guitars going full distortion with a barely-audible bassline. The really noticeable sound is the relationship the two guitarists have with each other. The vocalist/guitarist Jacek Grecki makes up a good portion of the band, but his effect is amplified a hundred times over by the second guitarist, Dominik Prykiel. The power of both of these talented guitarists requires something to keep them in check, and while setting the pace is usually the drummer's job, the guitars sound like they were made for each other. That's something called 'quality song structuring'. Heard of it? It's not a myth, I swear -- it's just difficult to come by these days. The structure is something that Lost Soul pays a great deal of attention to, and it deserves the attention. The shortest song here is 5:03; the longest is 9:41. If this band didn't master song structure, they wouldn't be composing such large tracks. Another thing that holds the mix together is the bass guitar, which is unusually pervasive throughout the record. The opening of "...If the Dead Can Speak" in particular has an incredible bassline, and the sound in general feels much more solid than it would without a bass backing it. That's the mark of a good bassist if I've ever seen one.
Alright, you get it. The guitars sound great. The song structure is pretty good. What else is there to Lost Soul? How about the vocal range? Grecki's vocals consist of powerfully-growled and screamed mids, some equally-strong low growls, and the occasional high scream that's often found layered over the mids. Grecki seems very comfortable with mids and lows, which allows the majority of the vocals to flow naturally. His vocals, more than any other part of the band, remind me of Behemoth. The highs aren't included as often, though, but this makes sense; it wouldn't seem like a natural vocal choice for the band's sound, as the mids and lows compliment the heavy drumming and guitar-centred music extremely well. Many of the lyrics are audible, but not all of it is a hundred per-cent clear. I do suggest taking a look at the lyrics, though, because the concepts within seem well thought-out, and the aural execution of the band's ideas is just one reason that Lost Soul continues to grow on me. With a solid structural foundation to build off of, though, it's no surprise that the lyrical themes (Satanism, anti-religion, dogmatic issues) are as well-executed as they are.
The drumming is a great mix of control, stipulation, and speed. Drummer Krzysztof Szałkowski and bassist Damian Czajkowski have an incredibly well-structured relationship within the album, allowing them to retain their individual performances, but joining forces when necessary to keep things interesting. Even without the aid of the bassist, Szatkowski is an amazing drummer who knows how to keep his tracks varied, but befitting. It's a really hard balance, but here we have it. They're all pieces of the album's puzzle. Immense in Infinity's drum tracks, out of all the instrumentation, probably benefit the most from the high-quality studio production. Szatkowski's feet are blisteringly fast -- even when his armplay slows down --and the drummer shows his skill and versatility many times throughout the course of the album. In particular, "...If the Dead Can Speak" and "One Step Too Far" have an incredibly-rhythmic structure created by the drum-bass relationship. "Personal Universe" has amazing vocal passages backed by fantastic guitar structure.
All of these specific examples boil down to one point, and that is the fact that Lost Soul has crafted an expansive, aggressive, nearly-flawless sound and structure for Immerse in Infinity, and while the entire album must be heard to understand this fully, a track to really hit home would most certainly be "216". Structurally, "216" goes through several phases of itself, but ultimately links back to a familiar melody. The midpoint of the album is marked by this track, and if you weren't feeling the technical vibe from the band's offering yet, prepare to do so. Things slow down for the opener of "Breath of Nibiru" before winding back and slamming into your face an uppercut of calculated death metal. Wrapping it up and clocking in at fifty-six minutes in length is the eight track, "Simulation". Spanning a whopping nine minutes, forty-one seconds, this album closer is more than a worthy song in its own right, opening with a minute of a cross between African and Native American tribal music, complete with conga drums and bongos. Then, the magic begins, and the well-structured riffs and solos within are the tell-tale descriptors of Lost Soul's true sound. This is what they have to offer - and it is nothing short of incredible.
3.) "...If the Dead Can Speak" (awesome music video)
After a four-year hiatus, Polish death metal band Lost Soul return. Frontman Jacek Grecki (vocals/guitar) was close to quitting the band, but after some profound soul searching he and the bass player Damian "Czajnik" Czajkowski gathered a new lineup around themselves. The band's fourth full length album,'Immerse in Infinity', is the result this new lineup created.
Lost Soul possesses three important traits: They are bloody good players, they can compose great death metal, and they manage to sound at least somewhat characteristic. "Characteristic" does not mean "unique", mind you. When talking about Polish death metal, yes, Lost Soul do sound very much like it. Take bands like Vader and Behemoth and there are Lost Soul's Polish connections.
Lost Soul love to do it fast, but none of the songs are a quickie. However, usually they don't do much of foreplaying, but give it nimbly like a rabbit, with one drastic difference: Only one of the songs reaches its climax in under 6 minutes; most are between 6-7 minutes, and one lasts almost 10 minutes. Endurance, stamina, potency. Enough of stupid copulating "joke" scribbling for now. Let's try to depict a song or eight, and see how Lost Soul's compositions work like.
Just like the album's cover artwork hints, or made me want to think so, 'Revival' begins sounding like a scifi movie. Distant echoes of the universe and machiney/alien/cybernetic effects fill the void with electric guitar riffing. The intro builds up into disruptive power of a black hole, as the band starts doing their death metal. And let me tell you, they are in their whirling form, as they go into the blasting mode. Some slower riffage comes in, but the pace really does not decelerate. The band are both fast and heavy simultaneously. Plus intelligible when talking about the catchiness of music. Mid-Eastern intonations are utilized. Guitar solos are pretty meaningful. During these seven minutes the band do not lose their grip, so the song stays close to chaotic, never going over the edge, but flushed in dramatic colours. Fast-forwarding to '...If the Dead Can Speak' ('Personal Universe' simply dwells in the same zones as the opener, so that's the reason for skipping detailing it). Now this song is different to the first two with its groovier essence. It is like a Fear Factory song processed through death metal conveyor: Catchier riffing, headbangable tempos and generally with easier-to-enter state of mind, this song serves as a good breather, because '216' again grabs your balls and rips 'em off faster than you realize what happened. Which you never will, if you're not in for some insanely fast stuff. "Insane" is not exaggerated, not a bit. With 'One Step too Far' you also can revisit the depiction of the opener, but reminding that every fast song has a different shading to them... 'Breath of Nibiru' almost made me mention Morbid Angel. Anyway, this monumental song is like a celestial sweep of gods' hands. Both approachable and beastlike, its dramatic narration is superlative on the album. A needed break for only-highspeed songs. 'Divine Project' is more or less about speed again, with numerous interesting tempo changes and flirtings with melodies. The closer 'Simulation' begins with tribal style music, which feels a tad too MIDI. However, it just contrasts the sheer power with what the band crashes in. Throwing on the canvas their whole palette of tempos, atmospheres and skills, the song is a perfect ending.
The only not-so-multi dimensional aspect about Lost Soul are the vocals. Throaty voice of Mr. Grecki is the dominant style. It is good enough, because it is angry enough and what's more important, the words are pretty easily heard. There are some spoken bits and other transitions, so it does not become dull-edged on th vocals department. Vader's Piotr "Peter" Wiwczarek is closest comparison I can think of. Deep lyrics ponder about such things that is human race planned by ancients from stars, who is I (no, not that Norwegian band...), what is I... And of course some bashing of Christianity, done with style. And oh yes, Wieslawsky Bros. production is basically flawless, covering every needed aspect from balanced to heavy.
If the previous album 'Chaostream' (2005) was "just" Earthly hell, then 'Immerse in Infinity' really goes to stars. And beyond the known universe. Lost Soul easily fill the gap of four years of inactivity in releasing territory with this one. Or was it 13,7 billion years' gap...
It's been a few years since the crushing Chaostream, an album which proved Lost Soul had the potential to join the very A-list of Polish death metal (Vader, Behemoth, Decapitated, etc.). 4th album Immerse in Infinity arrives, with some new members in tow, and crushes those same floodgates of potential, destroying the previous album and offering 8 tracks of quality death metal with a fine tuned balanced of technical precision, progressive riffing and unrelenting brutality. This is death metal devastation here, the complexity and superb production of the record should vault this band into the radar of many ignorami who have not yet heard of them.
Next to Vader's Necropolis (which is a lot more barebones than this album), it's the best Polish death of the year, easily obliterating the latest Behemoth for that honor. "Revival" opens with a lush cosmic ambience, with a throbbing bass that helps emotionally ascend into a destructive arsenal of storming riffs as the heavens tear asunder. This album is like the Galactus of death metal. Jacek Grecki has a voice very similar to Piotr of Vader, if a little blunter in places. You'll probably want a breather after this first track, but the intimidating "Personal Universe" will not allow such folly, as it bludgeons you into oblivion like a fleet of Star Destroyers en route to a real conflict. "...if the Dead Can Speak" begins with some timid, flowing guitars, elevating with some breakneck chugging, grooves and double bass madness, before the vocals take command over a simple, rolling pattern. "216" then again annihilates the listener into formless space dust. Get used to it, because it's going to happen again with "One Step Too Far", "Divine Project" and the tribally taunting "Simulation".
The album is just fucking sick. It sounds unbelievable, on par with Vader's best, polished works. The cosmic aesthetic is present despite the unforgiving battery of the modern Polish death. To put it simply, Immerse in Infinity is like the interstellar evolution of Immersed in Blood, equally brutal but bathed in a futuristic disposition. Never once does the staggering musical ability of the band interfere with the steady puncture of the songwriting. It's disgustingly humbling and thorough in its hostile statement of intent: if you thought Lost Soul meant business before, they now OWN that business. Enjoy.
After over four years of constant line-up changes, yet very little productivity since the release of their last album, severely under-rated Polish death metal act Lost Soul, have exploded back onto the extreme metal scene with their fourth full-length Immerse In Infinity. At just under an hour in length, this album is an absolute beast, with enough destructive force to rip the flesh right off the bone of neighboring death metal titans Vader and Behemoth bare-handed, chew it into a fine mush, then spit it square in what’s left of their faces. Part of this sheer power and energy is as a result of the album being so unbelievably loud volume wise, as in 8,000-decibels-of-obliterating-tech-death-insanity-sledge-hammered-against-your-skull kind of loud. However, this is definitely not to say that its overwhelming intensity and length is to the album’s disadvantage, as close to every second of it is simply phenomenal and one of the best death metal releases to ever come out of Poland.
The main factor attaining this deafening volume is the immaculate production, with every last detail precisely refined and polished to perfection. Boosting everything thousandfold, this impeccable job also compliments the album’s celestial, paranormal theme, with many recurring electronic interludes and transitions creating an other-worldly atmosphere and adding an extra dimension to the music. This is just one of the new and imaginative ideas Lost Soul have incorporated into their fresh approach, and evidence of how the master-mind behind the band Jacek’s creativity and song-writing skills as a whole have improved just about exponentially since the release of Chaostream. His guitar work is far beyond incredible, with a level of technicality and razor-sharp precision that is completely unheard of. From the heavily synchronized, militaristic like chugging in “...If the Dead Can Speak?” to the blistering finger tapping during the climatic solo that closes the track, or the harmonized leads in “216” to the pinch harmonic abuse in “Revival,” every last note, riff, string slide and bend is executed so precisely and with such finesse it’s unbelievable. These vast array of techniques are often merged together, usually with two harmonized tremolo picking parts set on top of a thunderous chord progression or with an epic lead at the forefront of the destruction.
Apparently, there are also some sections where Jacek has recorded up to four guitar tracks per channel; another reason why the album is able to produce such monolithic power. I personally find it difficult to identify these specific passages as everything just fuses together perfectly into the one bludgeoning force, rather than stumble and clash together into a painfully jarring mess. This fusion generates that real colossal “wall-of-noise” sound similar to fellow compatriots Behemoth’s later work, and just pummels you relentlessly into the ground, especially when those immense half-time grooves in “Personal Universe” and “Breath of Nibiru” start churning away. Fortifying these impenetrable barricades of sonic annihilation, are the ruthlessly barbaric vocals also provided by Jacek. He’s completely dropped his Nergal/David Vincent hybrid impersonation and utilizes more of a bellowing mid-range growl reminiscent of Vader’s vocalist Peter. These are also layered together with the occasional higher-pitched shriek or throaty guttural, which intensify the overall sound even more and drive you another six feet further into the ground. Spoken word passages akin to Matti from Dismember make a few rare appearances as well, which accompany or follow the electronic interludes and add to their mystic and unearthly atmosphere.
As mind-blowingly diverse and technical the guitar work may be, Desecrate’s drumming performance is the definite highlight for me. The extreme technicality of modern death metal drumming is here, but it transcends far beyond that, with a level of endurance, precision and strength that is out of this world. Keeping in mind that this album is 55 minutes long with individual track lengths ranging from 5 to just under 10 minutes, I want you to imagine the level of energy and effort required to hammer out such unbelievable drumming. My brains are still scrambled just thinking about it because it is quite literally inhumane and some of the most impressive drum work I’ve heard for a while. These mind-boggling skills combined with the immaculate production, give the unrelenting barrages of blasts, double bass and monstrous fills around the toms an enormous sound and crank the volume up a few more notches. In addition to these relentless bombardments, Desecrate also manages to maintain a lot of groove to his drumming in much the same way Kai Hahto can. This is evident in the more down-tempo passages and half-time beats, but there are even some blast beat sections and militant style snare patterns which have this inexplicable groove to them. I’m not sure how he does it, but he certainly needs to be commended for it as well as his performance overall. Epic album closer “Simulation” also features some tribal-esque conga rhythms and other oriental instrumentation, which generate a real ritualistic atmosphere similar to an ambient instrumental track you’d find on an Akercocke album. This is followed by more devastating drum work, outstanding guitar leads and melodic harmonies as well as a staggering guitar solo which concludes a near perfect album.
When you have an album of such length, there is bound to be some excess here and there, however this is fortunately only restricted to the atmospheric interludes which are sometimes drawn out for too long. Another issue which I personally don’t have a problem with but might not sit too well with others, is the slightly -core influenced “...If the Dead Can Speak?” After a climatic build-up, the song breaks out into simplistic, deathcore sounding chugging, and to be honest I was a little disappointed the first time I heard it actually. But now let me tell you, that this isn’t necessarily that bad of a thing, as it allows Damian’s exotic bass lines and grooves to shine through more while the guitars hold back a bit. This restraint however, is short-lived as Jacek explodes out with an absolutely phenomenal guitar solo, which apart from Desecrate’s drumming, is the biggest highlight of the album. After building up with epic, harmonized lead-work, you are instantly smashed to the floor with a flurry of lightning-quick shredding, sweeps and finger-tapping executed with razor-sharp articulation and a piercing melodic flare that stings like shrapnel. The majority of the solos follow this blisteringly fast formula, yet are all distinctively different and don’t even begin to sound re-hashed or repetitive.
With a genre in dire need of some new and imaginative ideas, Lost Soul’s latest full-length Immerse In Infinity has certainly revitalized it with their fresh and invigorating approach. While it may seem a bit long-winded with its length, I promise you that this is not to the album’s disadvantage because this is damn near flawless.