Technical Death Metal

Symbolik – Emergence Review

Symbolik – Emergence Review

“I’ve always preferred melodic death metal to plain death metal. While I appreciate the skill involved in well-crafted brutality, I generally insist on having some kind of melody to follow along with or atmosphere to get lost in. I remember when Archspire hit the Angry Metal world through Relentless Mutation, and I could not understand the appeal. One day, not too long ago, it just… clicked. The technical skill, the expert neoclassical weavings, the sheer unmatched power of the thing — I’ve loved the album ever since. And ever since, I’ve been hungry for more. Symbolik are the next tech-death group to take a shot at winning my heart with Emergence, their debut full-length.” Heart clicks.

Aronious – Perspicacity Review

Aronious – Perspicacity Review

“Before the podium this week is the debut from Wisconsin’s Aronious, a prog/tech death outfit with impressive chops and no lack of ambition. Across Perspicacity, Aronious can’t relax, and nor can they yield, relent, or…  uh… Anyway, they’ve heard every tech death band and will pretend to be all of them.” Pretensions to the throne.

Isle of the Cross – Excelsis Review

Isle of the Cross – Excelsis Review

“I admire bands who chance their arm at cracking into peoples’ music rotation, especially where their intent is to chart a new path or weave existing genres in dynamic ways. Enter Jo Schneider and the band he leads called Isle of the Cross. Excelsis is their debut release and promised to be an “enigmatic journey of sonic power.” Enigmatic is the key word as I have been unsuccessful in my efforts to learn more about the band, including the country of origin. Further promoting itself as for fans of Opeth and Symphony X is a bold strategy indeed, so I turned to my first listen with great interest.” Excelsisore!

Xenobiotic – Mordrake Review

Xenobiotic – Mordrake Review

“Recently a new rule was established in the AMG offices: no more claiming promos more than a month out. Giving everyone equal opportunity makes for more entertaining gladiatorial combat in the Skull Pit, you see. But now it’s become a game for the clever, so I decided to scout the waters ahead in case I needed to be ready to pounce. When I came across a promo by Australian prog-tech-deathcore outfit Xenobiotic, stared at the gorgeous Lewandowski cover and listened to its advance track, I actually set an alarm for the day I could lay claim to it, before Kronos or Ferrous could get their claws into my precious. Because if the rest of Mordrake was as good as the single I sampled, I knew we were dealing with potential Album of the Year material.” Throw it into the fire!

Krosis – A Memoir of Free Will Review

Krosis – A Memoir of Free Will Review

Krosis is a progressive deathcore band from North Carolina, A Memoir of Free Will being their second full-length. I’m not sure what progressive really entails, as the label has been used to describe anything from the djenty chuggaboundabounboundaluggs of Structures or Volumes, to the transcendental offerings of Slice the Cake or Kardashev.” Jawbreakers.

Odious Mortem – Synesthesia Review

Odious Mortem – Synesthesia Review

“Yeah baby, a new decade! Everything we did wrong last decade, we’re gonna fix that, you know what I mean? Flannel — it’s gone. Outta here, goodbye. Washington, you’re done. We’re basing the Zeitgeist outside of the Pacific Northwest. New people, new places. It’s gonna be sick! We’re gonna have war in the Middle East predicated on total fabrications! Let’s hear it for world inaction on climate change! Every tech-death band will be from California for some reason! Let’s go, baby, I’m ready to start the 2000s off right! I… Oh.” Mortem and pestilence.

Wormhole – The Weakest Among Us Review

Wormhole – The Weakest Among Us Review

“Karen, Plankton’s computer wife, defines ‘seaweed’ as, and I quote, ‘50% sea, 50% weed.’ I define Wormhole as ‘50% worm, 50% hole,’ where ‘worm’ represents tech-death and ‘hole’ represents slam. I rarely encounter genre-blending bands who can evenly balance the weight each constituent style bears upon their respective sounds, but Wormhole might be the first to find a perfect 50/50 distribution.” Numbers, worms and holes.

Unfathomable Ruination – Enraged and Unbound Review

Unfathomable Ruination – Enraged and Unbound Review

“Death metal is not a subtle art. Brutal death metal doubly so. Brutal, technical… well you get the point. Unfathomable Ruination exemplify this dearth of subtlety in name but belie it in their music. Their sophomore effort, Finitude, stands as one of the decade’s most punishing yet memorable death metal albums, punctuating each of its songs with a constricting riff or winding lead that seared it instantly into the mind. A great deal of the album’s success came from the band’s shrewd dispensation of show-stoppers, always releasing just enough brilliance to keep the listener wanting more. Apparently unwilling to rest on their laurels, Enraged and Unbound lives up to its predecessor’s unpredictable brutality.” Ruination as hobby.