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Impressive Debut - 88%

SRX, July 10th, 2007

Assaulting the public with this debut, The Faceless is one of the newer bands of today who which to try and make it through the metal scene by trying something new as oppose to trying to be another generic death metal band doing to the same old thing. After listing to this album many times, I find myself intrigued every time by the music here.

The first thing you might notice is keyboardist. While it doesn't sound like he is playing very difficult stuff, the keyboards is key part to the formula. The atmosphere presented by the keyboard is expertly done. Throughout the album there are random string choirs blazing behind the guitars in not only more relenting parts of songs, as you would expect, but also on more technical fast pace parts in the same bizarre rhythm. You also hear some vague electronic keys played just to mix it up a little bit.

The guitars are amazingly technical and raw. There is much Necrophagist and Arsis worship going on here. You hear a lot of technicality going on in all the music, statistic rhythms, many scale runs, and complex chord progressions are some of the stuff you will experience in this album. There are also some more melodic parts that usually work alongside the keyboardist to create some more atmosphere in some of the songs. Unfortunately we hear some breakdowns that usually aren't need. At the same time, they don't sound terrible, they sometimes work well with the song. Its just that they are overplayed and you feel like you just want to skip it to the next song. I think its important to note the amazing harmonized solo at the end of Leica. Its really powerful.

The vocalist does a simple growl that really doesn't differentiate from the crowd which is alright but it gets pretty boring fast. There are a few times where you hear a shriek but not a lot.

The bassist is hidden under the guitars unfortunately, but we do here some really funky cool bass fills, like in the title song Akeldama. Th drumming sorta sounds dry on snare on tom, making you think he is just slamming on a tree but other than that, the actuall playing is top notch. The drummer easily stays along with the band during the crazy changes in rhythm and syncopated parts of some of the songs while playing some impressive death metal drumming.

Overall this is fine technical progressive deathcore offering and a solid debut. These guys are really passionate about playing something new and musically impressive and this album shows. I hope in their next album, they include the keyboardist more. It feels that while the keyboardist really improves the album already, that sometimes he is just sitting there waiting for half the song to play a few chords. Also less breakdowns! If you wants some new death metal and experimentation then this album is the answer.