Engineering The Void
01. Reveal The Unseen
02. The Nature Of Blight
03. Breaking The Great Narcissist
04. A Speech To Survival
06. Monumental Burden
07. I Am You
08. Engineering The Void
[Unique Leader Records]
Technical death metal is both enthused about and disregarded by much of the online metal community, with claims of the genre being merely a showcase for guitar wankery and lacking any real substance. However every now and then a band releases an album which wholly encapsulates the genre while, at the same time, crushes those misconceptions. Sweden’s Soreption may very well have done that with their new LP Engineering The Void. After only a few spins of this record, naysayers will have their work cut out for them to pigeon hole the genre so mindlessly.
The members of Soreption have combined their individual talents and turned them to creating a machine-like, laser guided weapon of precision death metal. Drummer Tony Westermark’s work behind the kit doth both drop jaws and crunch them into the curb. The intricate cymbal flourishes of album opener ‘Reveal The Unseen’ dance over the battery of relentless double kicks and beats of the blast variety. His performance throughout the whole run time is really to be admired. One can but imagine the equivalent mileage that he covers when playing live. Elsewhere, in the rhythm section, bassist Rickard Persson not only keeps up with the 100mph riffing of guitarist Anton Svedin but adds neat touches to the angular and jarring guitar work that occupy ‘The Nature Of Blight’ and ‘Monumental Burden’. Little bass pops and strummed chords are unapologetic in their delivery and really push the syncopation of these songs into the listeners ear.
Persson’s maniacal, almost surreal take on tech-death guitar is as refreshing as it is audibly destructive. The lead work throughout the album does more than just serve as a flashy moment of individual skill. His solos are an extension of the bands performance, cutting in and out of heavily syncopated mosh sections without ever taking center stage. Still, there are several absolutely diabolical shreds throughout Engineering The Void, shreds which will break fingers and destroy fretboards of the online guitar community.
Basically, Soreption have managed to craft an almost robotic delivery of an organic product with vocalist Fredrik Söderberg being the icing on the proverbial cake. His harsh vocal delivery and the sparing use of gutturals and screams are the final piece of the puzzle which brings this modern metal powerhouse to the forefront of the tech-death genre among others. The rasping, repeated line during ‘I Am You’ could put hairs on the hairs on the back of your neck.
The record has some intriguing use of outside elements in certain tracks. The orchestral passages in the title track and ‘Breaking The Great Narcissist’ could very well have been pulled straight out of a Danny Elfman score, were Mr Elfman to write the soundtrack to his own sexual assault by a mechanical Satan. Elsewhere on the album is the nineties death metal chug-a-long ‘Utopia’ which slows the pace right down and grinds almost to a halt, converying images of the Terminator units in the opening moments of Judgement Day, crushing human skulls beneath their metal feet. The title track and album closer (which features a brief but blissful cameo by Trevor Strnad of The Black Dahlia Murder) ends after another evil orchestral section followed with a monumental slam passage, definitely not par for the course for a tech-death release. Soreption combine all of these elements to forego genre trends and create a uniquely brutal sophomore effort.
To finish up, the production on the album gives every instrument and every passage the space and clarity they need. Each individual bass note can be heard alongside the winding guitars and the percussion hits harder than a T-1000. The transitions between clean and heavy section sometimes lacks the required punch but this merely a nitpick and is not detrimental to the overall experience. For a release so early in the year, coming out at the same time as several well-sought-after records, Soreption have combined great musicianship with enviable skills in songwriting to forego genre trends and have created a uniquely brutal sophomore effort. Words really cannot do this record justice as it needs to be played and played loud to be fully appreciated. Potential Album Of The Year material.
Soreption’s Engineering The Void gets…