without Internet Explorer,
in 1280 x 960 resolution
Progenie Terrestre Pura are an Italian two-piece that take on a black metal framework and whose themes, like Swiss band Darkspace, take on a heavy science fiction concept.
As opposed to a lo-fi, cavernous aesthetic, PTP’s sound is a thoroughly polished and digital production that rare for its style succeeds in creating a desired atmosphere rather than quelling it. The black metal influence is often prevalent throughout and is often used as a narrative by which the vocals can find convenient space.
A Norse-style sense of technique is present at times in guitar playing, though it is often saccharine, and not unlike Agalloch pertains to post-rock, tremolo picked and shrouded in a vortex of metallic percussion that often helps to make the music appear more externally aggressive. Riffs occasionally rely on heavy punctuated, palm muted power chord strums amidst syncopated, mechanized drum machine. It’s hard not to think of the Norwegian band Red Harvest, albeit treading a less ‘dystopian’ ground.
Vocals are also of the black metal technique, well done, and suitable to the aesthetic uses a sufficient amount of echo, pitch-shifter and vocoder, the result being similar to tracks such as ‘Dead Inside’ from Beherit’s ‘Electric Doom Synthesis’ album.
There is a strong emphasis on electronics and synthesisers. Rather organic, the ethereal textures and soundscapes of Jean Michel Jarre are brought to mind. Interweaving the more aggressive sectors of each composition the more subtle areas of ‘U.M.A.’ are interspersed with textural guitar playing that is like 70′s Pink Floyd but sans the blues influence.
This combination of ideas makes for an interesting listen, but barely digs beneath the surface. Whilst there is no lack of atmosphere and immersion here, the meandering nature of songs leaves the album lacking in a sense of punch and counterpoint which one feels should be present. Those who aren’t overly contemplative of finding anything deeper beyond the stylistic and like something on the basis that it is different may enjoy this, but in terms of substance it falls short of what could otherwise be promising work.
Italy’s Progenie Terrestre Pura‘s promotional demo in 2011 displayed the band’s rather unique form of black metal, with a futuristic atmosphere fused with traditional black metal resulting in sound that instantly sucks the listener in.
Never mind that the band’s debut full length U.M.A. contained both the tracks that were in their 2011 demo, opening track Progenie Terrestre Pura quickly reminds those who have been out of touch with the band what made them so unique in the first place. For the first few minutes, one is thrown into a soothing soundscape, with the heavy ambient aspect of the music giving a nice, calming feel to the listener, allowing for one to be in a state of complete relaxation. Yet rather than the traditional ambient/atmospherics of bands like Burzum, Progenie Terrestre Pura has a more futuristic vibe, and this definitely helps in setting them apart from other atmospheric black metal bands.
Yet even as the first signs of metal come into view, things remain rather soothing with Nex’s whispered style of black metal vocals fitted right into the atmosphere that the band has created. But honestly the vocals aren’t really the focus here, with the band placing extremely heavy emphasis on the instrumental and atmospheric aspects of their music, like the 7-minute instrumental La Terra Rossa Di Marte. Even the more extreme moments are filled with melodies and heavy emotions, especially in the lead guitar lines that are littered throughout the album, and the ease with which the band goes from a completely soothing segment to one that is aggressive like on Sovrarobotizzazione. There are moments where it almost sounds like a more futuristic, sci-fi version of bands like Code with the avant-garde style of black metal.
If that isn’t enough to convince you to check out Progenie Terrestre Pura‘s music, then the awesome album artwork should at least rouse some interest in sci-fi freaks. If you enjoyed their demo in 2011, then U.M.A. will definitely make things all the more interesting, with three brand new tracks that further push the limits of the band in their musical expression, and in no time one would find himself completely mesmerised.