7 Journey's to the Avantgarde Seas.....
Witherscape-The Northern Sanctuary -CD/ Digital ( Century Media )
Ok so Dan Swano and Ragnar Widerberg are back with that amazing Prog Metal Death metal sound that has elements of Jazz and Blues baked in as well. Dan Vocals are have never been a better mix of Harmonic and Guttural. Witherscape are the best of Edge of Sanity, Moontower and Nightingales. They have worked with Paul of Novembers Doom again for the lyrics which are just stunning as always. It's the catchy way the music and vocals are present that just work . At times they sound like those amazing 70's and 80's Arena rock bands with just how bright and epic the music comes across. If your a fan or Prog, Hardrock and Death and Classic Metal melding into something familar yet something very much all it's own this album is going to blow you away. The guitars and synths really take you on a fantasy meets scifi journey . This really reminds me of an Amorphis album and that a good think in the way the prog elements are more a major part of the band make the extreme elements sound even more impressive . Ok enough gushing your turn to check out this Masterpiece in the making ..
Scarleth- The Silver Lining- CD/Digital ( The Leaders )
There are just certain musical styles that give me goose bumps and when you mix female soaring vocals with death vox and a melodic power/ prog metal tone it's just magic. If you can just for a moment think of mixing Gathering, After forever, Within temptation, Blind Guardian, Iced Earth and Ayreon into one band then you would have the powerhouse known as Scarleth. This album gets better and better with each and every listen I get to have with them. Haunting, Romantic and Epic this is what comes to mind with the production and arrangement of an undertaking like this. I know some with say it too poppy or prog or that it's too polished but this works so well for what the band is creating . I'm so glad I got hear it and you should be so damn lucky... There are even some great Thrashing moments on this album as well.
Despite- Synergi -CD/ Digital ( Eclipse Records)
This is going to be one of those bands that takes the listener in one of two directions as this is a very modern take of Sci/ Fi Prog Death metal bands that come to mind are Scar Symmetry, Blinded Colony, In Flames and Pain . This is going to be far too groove heavy for some but the heavy beats just work so well with the fury the band is presenting and the electro vibe is want makes me watch to listen to more and more of this. Futurist Death metal is just so good. They do have a Meshuggah meets Katatonia thing going on here that has really just hooked me. Despite you have a new fan and I hope the next release is even a more creative journey...
Future Figment- Qualm- CD/ Digital ( Self Released)
Icelandic Bands are not something thing we hear often and with a band like Future Figment you have a very Avant Heavy Prog rock bands that very much is into bands like Tool, Old Dead Tree, Opeth , Haken, Sense Field, Fates Warning or Shudder to Think these are the bands I hear when listening to this album . Lets be clear this album is hands down amazing and should be signed to label like Inside out or Sensory. We all need to hype this band up and get the word out because a band of this caliber needs to be exposed to as many music fans as we can get this could be a huge major release if the a video and airplay by Sirius/Xm happened, Bands like this can fill arenas . SO much amazing talent here folks.. Get this album or be lost in shadows...
Pestifere-Hope, Misery, Death- CD/ Digital ( Eihwaz )
I know nothing of this band and i'm really going to review this just but the musical output alone and from the 1st few track what I hear is Avant Black Death with a very ethereal / atmospheric feeling that is going from that Pagan folk side many bands like this use that Ulver started many many moons ago.. There is clearly a majestic quality in the music with those blackened guttural vocals going on and wanting to have that edgy tone through out the album when there is so much melody and complexity in the over all creation of your craft. There are from Minnesota. So that frozen tundra element of that black metal really does come through as well. Underground metal is becoming more experimental all the time and the mixture of styles and tones is really want makes Pestifere stand out from the rest of the crowd. Keep it up impressive work .
Karmakanic- Dot- CD/ Digital ( Inside Out )
Total Prog Rock Worship in the way bands like Porcupine Tree, YES, White Willow, Kansas and Ayreon create music. I will not make this a long review as it's needed you are going to love this album if jazzy, synth and fragile prog rock meet with those AOR 80's rock bands like Cheap trick, Asia and Fleetwood mac are musical adventures that give you chills. This is a soundtrack for the mind and does get very Jethro Tull at times too. Really impressive forward thinking art and Karmakanic do not hide there influences at all and they should not, Stunning is the best end word to use on this band ..
Kayo Dot- Plastic House on Base of Sky- CD/ Digital ( The Flenser )
Toby Driver has made Death metal, Jazz Rock, Noise rock, Avant rock, Ambient and almost Post Hardcore under Kayo Dot and now with " Plastic House" we have a mix of Kraut rock, Cold wave/ Electronic that reminds of something that would fit well in 70/80's with bands like Cars, Kraftwerk and Talking Heads. This is so very different then anything I've heard from him before. In not way does it make it any less impressive but if your looking for a metal or heavy rock side that is all gone. This album is extreme but in just the drastic change in sound for the band. The words Experimental, Avant and Synth Pop all come to mind with this album. I hear so much 80's Goth rock going on with in this band too if your a fan of bands like The Mission, Siouxsie and the banshees and Love and Rockets you will hear a lot in this album. I'm really impressed with this album as Kayo Dot has turned the table on use in the best way possible. This is so similar to what Ulver did and I loved this come to think of it there are some very Ulver like movements on this album too.