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Monogamy Not Allowed in a Difficult Game of Metal - 86%

bayern, May 18th, 2017

To begin with, this album has little to do with the doom/death metal movement. I have no idea what this description here is based on; maybe on another rare case of “monogamy” within the metal circuit. Anyway, the style on display here is modern progressive thrash with bold shades of math and psychedelic, with power and death metal humbly standing on the side ready to interfere if need be. A fairly versatile concoction on paper, and by all means in theory as evident from the hallucinogenic spacey instrumental intro “Iteration”. The beginning of “Handless Prophet” is probably the only place where some semblance of doom/death can be detected with the stomping riffs and the gruff deathy vocals, but later this piece turns into superb meandering technical/progressive thrash with nice clean vocals appearing, with complex and linear passages taking turns leaving the second half for a cool djent/jazz-like variation. “Versus Humanity” is an excellent psychedelic thrasher with a few more intense headbanging additives, the spacey moments recalling more recent Mastodon those trying to survive among the hectic math riff contortions. “Greaser Scabs” is 2-min of more orthodox mid-paced melodic shredding, and “Five” is an energetic mazer which tries not to break the mid-tempo parametres although a few speedier strokes can be come across, their stride “broken” by the imposing doomy finish.

“Boss Fight” is a steady steam-roller marching forward unflinchingly, providing the requisite deviations from the pattern like a nice technical section mid-way which is accompanied by sinister witch-like vocals reminiscent of Malhavoc, and a riff-dense jam-like session in the second half. “Red Wheelbarrow” is an interesting, varied combination of spacey mid-paced thrash, psychedelic ingredients, overt shades of doom and quirky funk/fusion-esque relaxations; and “F.F.S.” is an energetic power/thrasher with epic accumulations and a wider array of riff-patterns neither of them breaking the mid-paced domination. “Dog Blood” is a somewhat underwhelming closer being cosmic expansive progressive with a couple of heavier riffs, but for a large portion of the time the delivery is on the melancholic idyllic side.

A diverse recording on all counts that may capture quite a few fans’ imagination. The three lads involved here have done a good job mixing all the ingredients into one seamless whole that would satisfy a wider gamut of fans. “Monogamy” is out of the question as the approach constantly shifts keeping the listener on his/her toes the whole time. Some may not like the stylistic juggling a lot as at times it comes too contrasting, but in an encompassing progressive metal opus such transitions are to be expected on regular bases. There are quite a few configurations to be played with, with such a wide palette available, and judging by the skills of the “chefs” more pleasant blends will be served to the audience in the future.