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Yummy! - 86%

GuntherTheUndying, August 1st, 2008

Being an enormous fan of thrash and power metal, I appreciate a little medium resting on epic pastures and bloodthirsty alleys simultaneously, which is why “Feast for the Hated” easily wins my seal of approval. The band is Imagika, and they’ve been pounding out a power/thrash hybrid since 1993 with various combinations of such poetics. Thus, this underground sensation has cooked up a zesty full-length flavored by clever spices one can easily taste; like a culinary master, all ingredients delightfully build up the fantastic result: this record. I’ve been quite hungry for power/thrash metal that doesn’t relent on either perimeter, and “Feast for the Hated” can completely stuff any stomach craving dynamic textures, even if you’re fat.

Now when picturing power metal and thrash fusing, most people will typically have a F5-like figure in sight, but that is not what our production glorifies. In other words, the squad just doesn’t thrash uncontrollably before hitting a fluffy chorus or whatever; instead, Imagika carefully sways between those opposite patterns. For instance, thrash designs will genuinely evolve into bold representations of catchy, potent power metal, which is detectable by speed-laden attacks accommodating vocal leads, chorus orientation, soft interludes, and other characteristics including the genre’s nature; so in retrospect, these sound alterations impressively play tag, if you will. The vocals, however, also neatly entwine aggressive barks and chimes found in high registers as one entity, much like Imagika’s multiple influences on an instrumental spectrum. Clearly, Imagika is The Tinkerer of constructing assorted compounds.

Once these master architects reveal their trophies, the album’s mismatched gems begin showing different productions between each cut, pushing this distinct progression further than the original symbiosis. Setting those gallons of choking instrumentation aside, “Feast for the Hatred” occasionally triggers fresh waves that emerge in genius experimentation, such as female vocals on “Succubus” or smooth transitions from heavy to soft, amongst other figures. Although perks are quick in duration, you’ll be taken by storm from what Imagika can offer; what they deem short is creatively given more beef, without overloading its target. The only downside appears on “New Power Rises,” in which Imagika depends on a bizarre abuse of pinch harmonics to drive the entire song, creating a sloppy surrounding that’s almost an unbearable listen. But still, the amount of gratification from tunes like “Thinning out the Herd” can effortlessly eradicate that minor flaw, creating an album safeguarded by consistency all around.

Imagika has been in the making for several moons despite enduring mass obscurity, and their sixth full-length reveals a band bent not on cloning or modernization, but one simply crafting great tracks with strict brainpower and sharp variations. When I view the CD, there isn’t one meltdown revealed to my eyes, nor could complaints be filed upon experiencing the colliding worlds linking together; everything works in total unison despite a side of riskiness. As “Feast for the Hated” expires, Imagika has easily won the praise of this amused reviewer, and it’ll likewise set your limbic system on fire if dough is exchanged for this picturesque release.

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