It is probably apt with it being called Colder, that ears feel like they are amidst an unstoppable sonic avalanche listening to the new album from Swiss metallers Life’s December. It is a proposal which devours and obliterates the senses, leaving them bare to the emotional trespass and creative enmity which fuels the band’s raw deathcore tempest. It is a punishing proposal even more intimidating with the band’s embracing of djent bred animosity within their sonic savaging but equally a release which given time makes an increasingly compelling persuasion on the imagination.
Hailing from St. Gallen, Life’s December consists of vocalist Rico Bamert, guitarists Dave Mühlethaler and Valens Wullschleger, drummer Jérémie Gonzalez, and bassist Simon Mäder, a quintet which quickly has the imagination involved with album opener Final Speech. It is a scene setting, sonic landscape laying introduction with a portentous narrative being embraced by sonic mist before breeding a moment of predatory ferocity in vocal and sound. Instantly showing the band’s penchant for djent and down-tempo trespasses within a deathcore shaped animus, the track leads the listener into the initially subdued but soon ravenous jaws of Lest I Forget. Quickly in full venomous prowl, the track entwines corrosive riffs and toxic grooves, immersing them in a death charged tempest of sound and emotion driven by guttural vocals and a web of guitar and bass hostility. All the while though, an underlying sonic intrigue and adventure lurks, never quite breaking from the storm but persistently flirting and coaxing closer attention to match the lure of the vocal variety which also emerges.
It is hard to say that Life’s December is yet offering anything boldly new in sound but from this song alone there is plenty of fresh resourcefulness to get the teeth and appetite seriously into; a potent and dynamic persuasion which continues with Memories and World Of Blame. The first gets right under the skin in no time with its steely grooves and grouchy riffs. Once in control it then uncages a rapacious torrent of melodic intrusions and rhythmic rancor which in turn is soon involved in a net of more welcoming and emotively lively exploits. Across the song, the band seamlessly slips into mellower or more cancerous endeavours, contrasts and extremes skilfully woven together to create one of the more dramatically unique and memorable passages within the album. In comparison, its successor is a carnal tempest of noise and spite; a fall into sonic causticity and vocal ire which without matching up to its predecessors still has ears fully engaged especially as it expands its stark and increasingly cancerous landscape of sound and emotion.
The brief melodic seducing of Interludium allows a moment to reflect and engage with calmer essences within the band’s imagination before Snow Falls Silently envelops the listener in sonic and emotional confrontation. Once more, there is no major moment of uniqueness involved with the track but its virulent tide of riffs and invasive grooves grip attention, success whipped up further by the throat shredding vocals and their pungent intent and variety.
The austere yet intimately melancholic landscape of My Existence is revealed next, a passage of sound and emotion littered with melodic lures and primal eruptions within a chilled and ravaged ambience. From there, the album’s title track explores similarly evocative scenery of thought and tone but within a far more grievous soul sucking doom soaked climate equipped with rabid assaults of raw guitar and biting rhythms perpetually accentuated by the bone shuddering resonance of the bass. With mouth-watering spirals of sonic toxicity veining its body too, the song hits the spot whilst numbing the senses before the instrumental Hero Missing brings the album to a sombre close with, in many ways, its most disturbing emotional moment, certainly its most haunting.
There are moments within Colder that truly ignite a greedy appetite and other times where fascination takes over; successes which together ensures Life’s December, a band with striking potential, is worthy of proper attention as equally its re-release through Dark Wings.
Colder is out now via Dark Wings across most online stores.
Pete RingMaster 11/04/2016
Copyright RingMaster: MyFreeCopyright
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