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Persefone - Spiritual Migration - 94%

Silicon Messiah, September 11th, 2015
Written based on this version: 2013, CD, ViciSolum Productions

You don't hear a lot about the Andorran metal scene these days. That's why it's so fun that death metallers Persefone have now released their fourth album, titled Spiritual Migration. With their progressive, innovatory form of death, they're an exciting listen. The monstrously long tracks have left the entire production at a staggering seventy minutes, so it takes an open mind before throwing oneself into the pitch black depths of Persefone.

Already in the third track, 'The Great Reality', you've sunk into the music and it feels like you're an hour's listen in. And that's even with a two minute intro, titled Flying Sea Dragons (coolest song name ever, by the way). That's when I realize what a magnificent experience I'm about to partake in. At this point - not having heard Persefone at all before - I'm sold. You can clearly hear the Opeth and Symphony X influences, but Persefone is a band that with Spiritual Migration have created something clearly unique. And I know that I'll return more than once.

Guitar leads that melt your face, riffage that breaks your fingers and an overall phenomenal work by Carlos Lozano and Jordi Gorgues on the guitars. Guitar solos are abundant in the long tracks, which is fine with me, being a sucker for a good guitar solo. But there are also a few keyboard solos, something rarely heard in death metal. Instrumental 'Zazen Meditation' breaks all conventional death metal rules, giving a spiritual feel; never before have I heard the chirping of birds in a death metal song. It's striking, how they've created such a trance like feel. Something which is also true for the entire album.

The progressive parts are provided through shifts in tempo throughout the long songs, shifting beats and mesmerizing hooks; the tempo fluctuates wildly at times, yet at all times maintaining an interesting sound. Melodic guitar harmonies and keyboard licks suddenly relieved by monstrous riffs. Soul soaring growls mix with clean vocals and a lot of the time it doesn't have an innate death metal feel to it. Several long instrumental passages contribute to the sense of completion. In fact, many of the songs are instrumental and more than one may be counted as ballads. Persefone have mixed machine like perfection with the imperfections of being human. The conceptual knowledge within the instruments have given what feels like supernatural ability. Spiritual Migration is a musical journey through brutality and beauty, death and release, and all the grey dimensions in between.

Standout tracks: Returning To The Source, Inner Fullness

Originally written for 'getmetal.com', April 2013