Malacite – Untitled EP
Thanks to Jack for the copy of this CD – and my apologies it's taken so long to review!! Without further ado...
After the ever popular quiet before the storm intro “Disillusioned” starts with a crushing opening power chord as a prelude to the vicious thrasher that follows. The song mixes savagery with melody and flows well. Vocals are from the more aggressive school of growling – think Destruction or Vader – and there's extended soloing, so all in all a more than promising opener. “I Am God” has an enormous opening riff which leads into a scarily fast thrasher, there's some serious snare abuse on this one! As the song develops it takes a more death metal inspired route more in the style of Behemoth or Death. “Nightmare” has a complex opening before reverting back to thrash territory, albeit more in the style of Dark Angel apart from a particularly melodic bridge. “Retribution” is a more direct thrash assault with explosive soloing which is more than slightly reminiscent of Nuclear Assault. Saving the best, and indeed most complex, for last “Sands Of Sorrow” builds well from an atmospheric opening and reminded me of Evile's “We Who Are About To Die” as far as dynamics and overall ambition are concerned. A fine end to an impressive EP.
Coupled with a more than passable production this one gets Chop's seal of approval. Musically it's solid, the vocals work well, and the tempo changes are deftly handled. The vocals sit comfortably with the surrounding mayhem, and the extended solos make a refreshing change in the extreme metal world. Being critical the production, or more accurately the mastering, could have been punchier, but I respect entirely that this was probably put together on a very tight budget.
For a young band Malacite show considerable promise, and are a good live band to boot. They're clearly confident in their songwriting abilities too, producing long, complex songs, and I admire them for that. This EP is a worthy showcase of their talents and I await news of future releases with interest.