Fall – The Insatiable Weakness

Fall_RingMaster Review

Busier than a swarm of flies on a carcass but far more thrilling and rewarding, The Insatiable Weakness is a seriously explosive and dramatic introduction to Texan band Fall. The album is a cauldron of styles and flavours within a progressive/melodic death metal landscape which never gives ears and the imagination a moments rest whilst creating a gripping incitement as creatively tempestuous as it is coherently fascinating.

Taking inspirations from Scandinavian metal and bands such as Opeth, At the Gates, and Soilwork to their sound, the Portland based quartet emerged as 2010 took its early breaths. It was not too long before they were a notable presence on the live scene, going on to share stages with bands such as Helstar, Periphery, The Human Abstract, The Contortionist, Textures, Fallujah, and Aegaeon as their presence and reputation grew. A self-titled EP was released in 2012, an encounter featuring guest vocals from Soilworks’s Bjorn Strid which soon awakened not only more of the US to the band’s emerging potency and force but ears and attention further afield too. Now the band’s self-released debut album is set to stir up plenty more with its inescapable adventure and invasive imagination.

Consisting of vocalist/keyboardist Jessie Santos, guitarist Daniel Benavides, and bassist David Gutierrez alongside, for the album, the ever irrepressible rhythmic craft of Soilworks’ drummer Dirk Verbeuren, Fall swiftly encase ears in a cloud of sonic and rhythmic incitement as opener From Ashes rises threateningly to spawn a maelstrom of cutting riffs and intensive rhythms. In its air harmonies also break out with an atmospheric tempting, both getting their moment to descend poetically on the senses within the storm with Santos revealing pleasing variety and strength to his vocal delivery, raw and clean. Given potent hint of what is to come, the song continues to evolve its forceful and evocative tapestry with strands of progressive invention and rousing enterprise, all amidst intrusive turbulence led by Verbeuren’s renowned prowess.

Cover artwork by Niklas Sundin

Cover artwork by Niklas Sundin

Not of the Sky continues the attention catching start; the vocals again one focal point in a cascade of many, with their slight discord, whether intentionally or not, adding greater character to the emerging bedlamic and creative tirade of the song. Furiously unpredictable and fluidly aligned, melodic enticing and colliding flavours breaks through as each twist grips ears, softening and working them up into an eager appetite for the also tempestuously toned and adventurously woven Ever Hollow. Bellowing and tempting, the track is a magnetic fury veined by seductive magnetism, extreme and progressive metal uniting in something intimidatingly hellacious, sonically psychotic, and at times rousingly catchy.

Through both Harvester and Cinis, band and album continue to infest and corrupt the senses, though the former is just as potent in its infectious glaze of pop metal. Featuring guest vocals of Jessie Frye, it is another bundle of contrasts and clever contradictions creating a track which mesmerises as strongly as it bruises. Arguably it is the most accessible offering on the album but is as inventive and volatile as any of the more challenging and invigorating proposals within The Insatiable Weakness. Its successor is a much more voracious proposition, as swiftly shown by Strands of Night vocalist Asa Dubberly, who guests on the tempest, and the carnivorous tone of the bass which builds on the darker menacing tone it offered the previous song. Around them, and the bracing roar of Santos in its different strains, guitars stir up a nest of sonic vipers and melodic resourcefulness, the track painting a turbulent and tenaciously diverse canvas of raw and alluring flavours.

Ears and appetite are only drawn in tighter as the celestial hued and aggressively bracing Desolation and the predatory thrash seeded, death fuelled torrent of provocation posing as Soul Ignition thickly satisfies whilst …to dust lights ignites another fuse to lustful reactions with its unbridled ferocity and cantankerous attitude lined with infection soaked exploits. Providing one more major highlight amongst only heftily persuasive successes, its rich tempting is emulated in kind by the uniquely different Empty where, arguably for the first time, keys stretch their ever present atmospheric and ambience casting prowess into being a leading protagonist.

The album closes up with firstly Gods of Ruin and its landslide of unforgiving rhythms within an exhaustive infestation of expansive metal voracity and finally You were but a Shade, it an invasive and virulent episode of unpredictability, absorbing imagination, and explosive individual craft from all concerned. A seduction that tears strips off the senses, the song is an immense end to a similarly impressing release.

Only a weighty amount of listens does The Insatiable Weakness true justice, but every venture reveals new striking layers, previously undiscovered twists, and a bigger hunger for more as reward. As a name, Fall does not make a particular impact but rest assured from their first moments, sound and album more than make up for it.

The Insatiable Weakness is out now @ http://fall1.bandcamp.com/album/the-insatiable-weakness

http://facebook.com/falltodust

Pete RingMaster 28/01/2016

Copyright RingMaster: MyFreeCopyright

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Arbitrator – Indoctrination of Sacrilege

ARB_COVER

If you speak to the right people there are always good, often great things said about any new and emerging band. The confirmation is always only in the music of course and just as often as words are proven, anticipation is left in unintended deceit. Arbitrator since the release of The Consummate Ascendancy EP in 2011 has been a band often talked up and recommended from certainly Canadian and North American sources. Their debut album Indoctrination of Sacrilege is our introduction to the quartet and all promise and suggestions of their growing might have been convincingly proven.

Indoctrination of Sacrilege is a beast of a release, an intensively atmospherically soaked death metal bred proposition which from making an impressive first impression grows into one striking and fascinating theatre of imagination. Fusing in textures and essences from electro and industrial climates to progressive and ambient flavouring, the six track release engulfs and stirs ears and thoughts with skilled and increasingly rewarding adventure. The band itself is the brainchild of Robert Kuklaand, its emergence starting in 2010 and announced by the release of The Consummate Ascendancy the following year. It was an acclaimed proposal from the band but just a tester in many ways for the exploratory might of Indoctrination of Sacrilege. With a line-up of Myles Malloy (lead guitar), Connor ORT Linning (programming), and Soilwork drummer Dirk Verbeuren (ex-Devin Townsend Project, ex-Aborted) alongside Kuklaand (rhythm guitar, bass, vocals), Arbitrator put themselves forward now as one of the more intriguing and exciting progressive death metal prospects. They also still feel like they are still only just scratching the first few layers of their potential despite the weight and success of their album, a potential and prospect of even greater things ahead quite exciting.

The Sacha Laskow (ex-Divinity, Every Hour Kills) produced and Jens Bogren (Opeth, Katatonia, Amon Amarth, Arch Enemy) mastered album, swiftly has the imagination engaged as the entrance of opener They Will Worship This Fire of Agony comes through scenery of portentous bells and death feasting flies as church seeded chants seemingly offering final guidance as a dark pestilential cloud looms nearer and nearer. That sonic threat is realised a muscular wall of riffs and punchy rhythms veined by enchanting keys. It is an immediately incendiary and compelling persuasion enhanced by the guttural growls of Kuklaand and spicy persistent grooves. Samples are soon briefly mingling with the cavernous presence and intimidation of the song too but it is the infectious hooks and melodic winery which most captivates against the evolving and enlarging drama of the keys. It is an imposing and enthralling encounter, and as the album subsequently shows itself to be, a pleasingly unpredictable one.

The potent start to the album is solidly continued by Stillborn Bastard of The Nazarene, it straight away binding the appetite with intensive riffs and rhythmic swings whilst thoughts are provoked by its atmospheric colouring. Kuklaand again impresses as he binds words and syllables with a gripping impassioned tenacity which provides additional potent focal points amidst many on release and track. Samples and keys again paint additional inciting scenes in the ferocious and threatening landscape of the song, though it is the superb melodic enterprise of Malloy which steals more of the glory.

Through each song the album just gets better and creatively bigger, the next up For That Which May Appease Lions unleashing black hearted rock ‘n’ roll in a hellacious offering of grooved and addictive contagion aligned to corrosive and oppressive malevolence. The track transfixes from its first moments, the predatory nature and sound of the bass a delicious stalking within the maelstrom of rancor whilst clean vocals add a different shade of temptation to the voracious soundscape. Keys and guitar endeavour similarly vein the tempest with their own unique and engrossing narratives, everything seamlessly flowing and combining together to enslave ears and imagination. Unpredictability is rife across the track, and reveals more twists and subtle ideation with every listen, an exciting trait just as potent in Serpent of The Styx. The song’s electronic opening is a melodic drift of keys and radiant melodies yet it all comes with a solemn and melancholic charm courted by a slowly brewing dark side. An eruption of that heavy menace is eventually unleashed yet the song still continues to radiate melodic expression within a web of carnivorous grooves and enjoyably volatile rhythms. There is also a cinematic ambience to the track, its ‘warmer’ and calmer moments apocalyptic in suggestion as the track’s muscular and rabid side trespasses and challenges the senses. As its predecessor, the track is a mouth-watering incitement which just gets more addictive and anthemic with every passing minute, hook, and barbarous swing from Verbeuren.

       Profaned and Perfected whilst not quite matching the heights of the previous two tracks, has its own persuasive agenda of spiny grooves and spiky beats to contemplate, and an anthemic swing to drool profusely over. It is an out and out death metal ravishment but also one unafraid to explore warmer climes through the often spellbinding invention of the industrial spiced keys and climactic guitar. The song is still a bruising and commanding predator keeping body and emotions invigorated and fearful before the ‘epilogue’ like instrumental adventure of The Burning Sands of His Kingdom brings the album to a fine close. The electronically driven piece draws a cold and stark wasteland yet equally suggests hope with its melodically epic and intimately expressive tones within rugged scenery.

Over a handful of listens in and there is still more revelations coming forward within songs as Indoctrination of Sacrilege continues to reward, that in itself a strong reason with the diversity of sound and invention to check the album out. Wrapped in the excellent artwork of Colin Marks (Exodus, Scar Symmetry, Jeff Loomis), the release has been suggested for fans of Bloodbath, Dismember, and The Project Hate but also it is easy to suggest that those with a taste for bands such as Opeth, Mercyful Fate, and Escapethecult could do far worse than taking a plunge into Arbitrator and their first album.

Indoctrination of Sacrilege is available from February 13th @ http://arbitratorofficial.bandcamp.com/album/indoctrination-of-sacrilege

https://www.facebook.com/Arbitratorband

RingMaster 12/02/2015

Copyright RingMaster: MyFreeCopyright

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Colosso – Abrasive Peace

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    Colosso in name and colossus in sound, the one man project is an immense and staggering confrontation of inventive and adventurous death metal as evidenced by debut album Abrasive Peace. Veined with flames of dramatic and varied genres inspired sounds and dynamism which leaves exhaustion as one of its potent legacies, the release is a thrilling and hungry destructive treat which marks this Portuguese band as a formidable contender, if not now undoubtedly in the future, in the ring graced by established death metal giants.

The Oporto based project is the solo invention of vocalist/multi-instrumentalist Max Tomé which he began in 2011 with the initial idea to write a death metal album where many other influences and soundscapes would fit in, something successfully achieved it has to be said with the album. In the March of that year Tomé invited Dirk Verbeuren (Soilwork, Scarve, Devin Townsend, Jeff Loomis) to play drums for the album which he agreed, the album itself going on to be mixed and mastered by Paulo Lopes. Originally a limited self-released encounter physically and as a download last year, the album has been picked up for another deserved wider venture into the world by Canadian underground label Mulligore Production. Also available with Peaceful Abrasiveness, an instrumental version of the release, the album is a stunning and invigorating bruising upon the senses with the fullest of rewards and satisfaction in tow.

The diverse flavour and enterprise of the album comes with the influence of, in Tomé’s words “Musically, this album is the sum of four of my favourite bands: Hate Eternal, Decapitated, Meshuggah and Devin Townsend” and “Lyrically, Abrasive Peace focuses on several themes, such as the butterfly effect, the search for perfection, or the inner need to disconnect from everything and just forget about the world.” The depths and textures of both aspects are as captivating as the sonic and brutal onslaught of intensity which swamps the ear and beyond into full and willing capitulation. It is a monstrous ravaging from start to finish but loaded with moments of almost tenderness and understanding restraint which seduces the passions further, though ultimately the predator instinct of the release and songs always has its sadistic way.

The starting electro caress of opener  Anthem To Chaos initially raise eyebrows but once joined by a tirade of rhythmic brilliance and rapacious riffing it becomes with the melodic call of the guitar sparking the atmosphere, a warm and intriguing temptation. The vocals of Tomé are savage and uncompromising yet like the corrosive breath of the attack elsewhere has a lure to its violence which falls into perfect place and persuasion alongside the ever evolving soundscape of the track. The unbridled snarl of his bass again captivates individually whilst combining with all elements for an unrelenting expanse of creative and absorbing aural animosity and evocative imagination.

Like across the whole release, the first song leads straight into the following might of Demolish To Rebuild, a furnace of a track raging with vocals and rhythmic malevolence wrapping in a wonderfully acidic and melodic narrative. From the initial fire the track is a deliciously seductive aural tale of skilfully crafted beauty and provocative ambience which transports the listener to a place of safety though with its own teasing shadows before a final blaze of aggressive vehemence ravages all.

Through the intensive and grievous Pattern Of Disconnection and The Epiphany, the single from the album, the release chews on the already set in wounds with fascination and enterprise, the first with a certain bestial intent but reined with a toxic groove which niggles yet ignites the purest ardour whilst the second of the two tracks unleashes a blistering technical havoc which Meshuggah would greedily accept as their own and a sonic lancing from the guitar which spreads and cages the senses like a steel web.

Track by track the album continues to hold the passions tightly in its invention and craft, In Turmoil and Thou Shall Never Be Benevolent feverishly gnawing at the senses and emotions with their own unique carnivorous appetites whilst Headless Endures uncages a rhythmic and murderous frenzy which leaves molten psyche bubbling with contentment.

The closing Unplugged From The World explores and exploits thoughts and emotions for a final triumphant tempest of imaginative evocation and severe inventive agitation. It is the perfect summing up for the album with the drumming of Verbeuren constantly jaw dropping and exciting whilst Tomé unveils a wealth of thought, craft, and originality in his songwriting and musicianship that you cannot help suspecting he and Colosso will go on to truly major things. Abrasive Peace is an album which takes time to reveal all its glories, making every encounter fresh and adventurous, but equally breeds a sure appetite from the first moment it venomously licks the ear, and simply is a must check out album.

www.colossometal.com

9/10

RingMaster 06/06/2013

 

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