Chaos Divine are somewhat of a badly kept secret. On one hand, in the circles in which I move, their name is pretty recognized within the milieu of Australian progressive metal band. But on the other, it seems as if they’re still to break through into the ears of the general public. Hopefully, this changes soon; the band are able to produce the kind of emotive, sweeping progressive metal that I hold so dear to my heart. With a new single out, “Unspoken”, the band are signaling that they are ready to take on the next phase of their career. Heavier than anything on their much beloved previous release, with abrasive vocals playing a prominent role in its sound, “Unspoken” shows that the band have plenty left to say and a lot more fuel in their tanks.
The track also exhibits a lot that’s new for the rest of the instrumentation, including some fresh and interesting guitar tones alongside the sweeping choruses. Overall, it’s a welcome comeback from the band, almost exactly four years after their last release; it seems to say that they’re not looking just to come back but to ask questions about what makes them tick as a band. This then presented itself as a perfect opportunity for us to dive deeper into just that, inviting the band to list their influences just as they seem to be reconfiguring themselves and getting ready to plunge into their own motivations. Read on for their picks!
David Anderton (vocals)
Metallica – …And Justice For All
As a really young kid (maybe 5 or 6 years old) this album was my introduction to metal and the start of my long obsession with Metallica. While it’s not an album that I regularly listen to now and, to be honest, would probably struggle to make it into my top 5, you can’t go past the influence this album had on the metal and music scenes in general. For the first time it exposed the masses to a type of metal that wasn’t glam or power, but just really friggin’ heavy.
Simon Mitchell (Guitars)
Scar Symmetry – Pitch Black Progress
Firstly, it’s just an all round great album and despite the fact that they certainly aren’t the pioneers of Swedish melodic death, they added a polished element to the genre that I hadn’t really heard before. More specifically though, I was really drawn to Per Nilsson‘s lead guitar work. I grew up being a huge fan of Dimebag, and I learned Metallica’s Black Album inside out so, for me, guitar was all about bravado. Then, when Pitch Black Progress came along, it opened me up to another world of guitar playing that was emotive and displayed a lot more finesse, while still being undeniably heavy and aggressive.
The way Nilsson gave each song such a unique and identifiable guitar solo really struck a chord with me (pun intended), and I can still sing them all in my head despite not having listened to that album a great deal in the last five years or so. It’s almost like each solo is another song within the song. Just listen to his two solos in the final track of the album, “Deviate From The Form”, and you’ll know exactly what I mean.
Tim Stelter (Drums)
Slipknot – Iowa
Iowa is probably one of the darkest, most honest metal recordings I’ve ever heard. Apparently they were having a pretty shit time around then, and I think you can hear that venom and desperation in every song. It feels like Ross Robinson got every last drop of Slipknot‘s lifeforce onto that record. Sonically it’s so raw, no click tracks, no grid-ing, just pure fire, everything from the quietest whisper to all 9 people on full-bore. Standout track: “Metabolic”.