Machiavellian - The Impossibility Of Death In
The Minds Of The Living.
Thanks to Ant for the CD and band biography. Signed earlier in
the year to the Canadian label Year Of The Sun Records, this is
their debut EP. Quick band intro before the review; two guitarists
are Ste and Chris, Ant plays bass, Nick is on drums and the vocals
are taken care of by Kris. And so to the music...
- Ranger. Shortest track on offer at just
under four minutes but manages to pack a hell of a lot in. Drummer
comes out blast-beating and the aggressive vocals leave you
in no doubt where this band are heading. The slower bass-driven
breakdown section is superb. Mix a lot of styles, this track
exhibits thrash, death metal and hardcore sections and splices
them together effortlessly. Tempo changes are deftly handled,
closest band reference points to me were Daath and Thus Defiled.
- Bone Island. Six minute epic starts with
a stunning blackened death section. As with the first track,
it is obvious on this one that the band like their pared down,
slower, vicious, sections. Like this one overall, some of the
vocals grated a bit though. First solo is a cracker and sounds
very much like classic Slayer, pity it's so short. Another track
that blends a lot of extreme metal styles and influences very
well. Lengthy outro seemed a bit pointless to me.
- Marxism. Longest track on offer at over
eight minutes and unfortunately it feels it. Slower track initially,
there is a feeling of menace and mayhem to come. The doom section
is immensely powerful, my friends in local monolithic doom band
I Am Colossus would be proud of this one. Approximately two
minutes in all hell breaks loose. Intricate basswork leads into
a very fast thrash section. The rest of the song sees tempo
changes galore and another great guitar solo at around the 5'
25" mark, albeit that again it's too short! This one may
well work superbly live, but on this CD I think it needs reworking,
at least a minute and a half shorter.
- Let Home Be My Gallows. Shorter track to
finish at just under the five minute mark. Furious onslaught
from the word go in a blackened thrash manner. Vocals were very
familiar sounding throughout this section, it's been driving
me mad trying to place them. The drumming throughout is excellent,
the kick-drumming on this one is stunning. The riff at 2' 10"
reminded me of Sabbath's "Children Of The Grave" initially
before it mutated. Solid end to the EP.
Negatives are far outweighed by positives. The title of the
EP doesn't do much for me, it's overly long and bordering on
being pretentious. Marxism is too long and needs reworking,
but please lengthen the solo! And now the praise section!! If
these guys are anywhere near as accomplished musically as this
EP suggests they must be skull-crushing live. My promotions
wing, Millennium of Blood, would offer you a gig without hesitation.
The complexity and differing musical styles are handled clinically
well. In general the songs don't feel long which is always a
good sign. The production is superb, hardly surprising as it
has been produced and subsequently mastered by Chris Fielding
and Russ Russell. The drumming throughout is exceptional, some
of the kick-drumming is phenomenal. Overall I like this a lot
and I wish the band every success when this EP is released.
Can't think of any obvious reason why it won't do well.