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Amazing, glorious, extraordinary - 90%

the_flying_lamb, January 25th, 2014

Browsing metal-archives for avantgarde metal bands led me to this amazing band find, one of the luckiest in the recent months. I listened to "Methocha" on Youtube and was instantly hooked, especially by the clean vocals that reminded me of Arcturus or Borknagar, but on steroids.

The album "Methocha" itself seems to be the result of a ton of hard work, and features some really complex and interesting songwriting, while still being somehow catchy. Progressive as a whole, even though it lacks the lengthy tracks that characterize this genre, the release is quite technical and intricate. Dissonances back crystal-clear, angelic singing on some slower songs ("Phobos Anomaly") while Enslaved-like shrieks lead the massive blast-beat attack on tracks such as "Destroyer". Breakdowns are not uncommon, as one can hear midway through the "Dead Syphon Focus" tune, one of my personal favorites off this album.

The keyboards are central to this album, but without being overwhelming, as in a symphonic extreme metal band. Instead, they add up to the decadent, bleak, dark atmosphere that this record presents us with. Dark piano intros, such as the one from "Phobos Anomaly" are followed by string leads, or by strange effects that back, at times, the whispered vocal parts, as can be heard in the longest and (in my opinion) best track of the release, "The Labyrinth of Infinity". I also like the singer's clean voice a lot, and the way it harmoniously mixes with the aggressive guitars and drums is simply mind-blowing, even though it is reminiscent of the music Arcturus played, especially on their last album. The progressive bits do not seem to be inspired by any particular band, but I do recognize some Enslaved-like moments. "Methocha" has a lot of personality and style, all you have to do is to listen to the release over and over again to feel and understand it.

What I don't really like about "Methocha" is the quality. The mixing could've been a bit better, and it gives the impression that some instruments are 'sunk in' during the aggressive bits, and the drums sound odd at times. However, given the limited budget and time the band must've had, it is indeed a decent-quality album.

Overall, it's a great album. I enjoy it a lot and hope the band will release a record at least as good as this one, as soon as possible. Listen to it, especially if you're a fan of Arcturus, Borknagar, Enslaved, Age of Silence or Emperor/Ihsahn!