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Dystopia Banished Thus Immortalized - 95%

bayern, January 12th, 2018

This outfit are probably the longest running extreme metal outfit in Argentina. I have gone through their past catalogue a couple of times in the past, largely due to insistence on the side of fellow metal heads who find this band’s works irresistible, and although I by no means consider them underachievers, I haven’t been able to warm up to their endeavours. A major reason for that is the guys’ penchant to throw too much into the melting pot, producing extreme progressive metal concoctions using the “Florida meets Gothenburg” death metal base, but there’s thrash, there’s black, there’s pure progressive, there are some curious Opeth-esque labyrinths woven at times as well…

In other words, there’s something for everyone on nearly every album from their discography, but somehow these ingredients blended together don’t seem to hold water for very long, at least not to these ears. However, things started to crystallize to an extent on “Inexorable” with most of the influences put aside, the band keeping the Floridian side of the death metal foundation by adding both a more clinical, more technical guitar sound and a more atmospheric aura resulting in a really captivating release, the guys seemingly ready to outgrow their overambitious proclivities.

The album reviewed here is a culmination of this new, less scattered approach the band producing a technical/progressive death metal masterpiece that uses the Death legacy as a guiding light, but there’s more offered here like furious blast-beats on “Las Tumbas de la Virtud” which threatens to tumble into a black metal territory, but enchanting melodic tunes arrive later to prevent this from happening alongside more disciplined technical riff-patterns which successfully “fight” with the rushing blast-beating strokes. “Illuminacion y Equilibro” engulfs the listener with bouts of technical brilliance and never loses steam, the guys adding impetuous gallops, more infectious melodic hooks and an imposing doomy passage to ensure there’s no dull moment on this entertaining roller-coaster.

“Efugio de los Lamentos” is a short stylish nod to the dazzling brutality movement (Suffocation, Cryptopsy, Decrepit Birth, etc.), a superb hyper-active shredder the apocalyptic shouty deathy vocals soaring above this sea of inordinate musical intricacy; and “Implacable” is an all-instrumental piece, another exemplary display of technical wizardry the guys lashing like demented at times, at others weaving puzzling riff-knots that would make even Martyr and Coroner envious, leaving the second half immersed in gorgeous epic doom. “Iconos Mudos” doesn’t slouch indulging in a dizzying change of tempos with nearly classical precision exercised with more orthodox gallops helping on the side those mortified by the serene acoustic beginning of “Rostros Yertos”, a semi-balladic/doomy respite the creepy minimalistic riffage never leaving the mid-paced parametres. “Acertijos de la Esencia” is back on the more complex wagon with loads of infernal intricacy, supreme melodic licks, a couple of less tamed speedy sections, and stunning surreal walkabouts that one may end up listening again and again; a riff-fest of the highest order to which a very nice companion piece is “Alegorias Inmaculadas”, a more dramatic and a more Death-prone proposition with bigger emphasis on the melodic configurations that stifle the isolated attempts at less bridled blast-beating.

A sheer highlight not only on the Argentine, but on the whole South American death metal horizon, this opus is a most shining example of how a more coherent, less far-reaching delivery can produce much better results. What’s even greater is that this effort can’t exactly be placed into any of the existing categories within the well mapped death metal roster; it takes shades of several branches thus making the final product more attractive. The shadow of Death is not very tangible at times, the delivery reminds of the Chuck Schuldiner (R.I.P.) output rather than follows it closely with frequent bold ventures outside the borders of any influences towards more individualistic execution.

And this should be the spirit on future works as the band definitely have more to create within the death metal confines now that they have found the right way to excite the audience, or at least a certain fraction of it. Argentine metal is not only the happy-go-lucky power/speed metal of Horcas, Hermetica, and Lethal; there were, and still are to my knowledge, these great technical death/thrashers Sion, among other stalwarts; and it’s great to see that they’re not alone in their fight in this dystopian, not always benevolent phenomenon known as the music industry.