Dysrhythmia – Terminal Threshold

The best part about bands with a completely unique identity is the way they not only differentiate themselves from other groups, but from their own sound with each subsequent release. This trait applies directly to Dysrhythmia and the vast field of other projects involving Kevin Hufnagel (Gorguts, Vaura) and Colin…

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Heavy Delinquency – The Clearing Path

The Clearing Path are more than able and willing to rise to the challenge of esoteric black metal. This one man project, spearheaded by one Gabriele Gramaglia, hails from Italy and makes the type of black metal which straddles the line with death via sheer technicality and tone. The project’s second full length release, Watershed Between Firmament And The Realm of Hyperborea (a name which instantly refer back to the intro paragraph of this article and the ideas of radical esoteric-ism), is a twisting exploration of these ideas, constantly offering up something new. Where-ever it goes, it’s coated in this impenetrable sheen of bewildering musical composition and a vast, cavernous approach to production. This creates an album that’s abrasive in ways far beyond the fact that the vocals are growls/shrieks.

Dysrhythmia – The Veil of Control

There is a dissonance to the music of Dysrhythmia not employed by the above bands, and, obviously, Neil Peart has never employed blast beats, though Rush is perhaps a great analogy for what Dysrythmia aspires to, as both bands feel collaborative and feature equal contributions to the larger sound. But these extreme metal flourishes are only one element of the music and weave seamlessly with the larger tapestry, rather than being the dominant color, resulting in an album influenced by extreme metal, as opposed to an extreme metal album.

Hey! Listen To Lesser Life!

It really looks like there’s a lot of great new material coming out of the humid haze of North Carolina lately, this time in the form of some savage deathgrind. If you like your songs short and sweet but ultimately oppressive and nihilistic, then you’ve got it right here with Lesser Life, a savage quartet who have just released another excellent and concise EP. Bone Deep & Numbing takes a lot more influence from brutal death metal than their earlier (and more blackened) releases, and there’s even some sludgier moments to help break things up too. While Lesser Life doesn’t really want to commit to any particular style of extreme metal, they’re unquestionably dedicated to putting out whatever’s the most intense possible idea at the time.

PREMIERE: 14-String Guitarist Felix Martin Demonstrates New Song, ‘Viroliano’

On the far reaches of tech-filled prog, Felix Martin’s esoteric one-man act boasts fairly unique instrumentation; his breed of jazz fusion and world music inspired shred utilizes a custom-built 14-string guitar, bringing to mind the likes of Colin Marston’s Warr guitar, albeit utilized in a less abrasive fashion. It’d be…

Gorguts – Colored Sands

The original masters of technical death metal with eldritch, unsettling and innovative songwriting have finally come out with a new album after twelve years. The band had broken up due to the suicide of drummer Steve MacDonald. Several years later, Luc Lemay (founding member, guitarist, vocalist) reinvented the band in 2009 with an all-stars lineup consisting of himself, Colin Marston of Behold… The Arctopus, Dysrhythmia, Krallice and several other amazing bands on bass, Kevin Hufnagel of Dysrhythmia on guitar, and John Longstreth of Origin fame on drums. Considering the legacy of the band and how well regarded their 1998 album Obscura is even to this date, making a new album that doesn’t disappoint fans after more than a decade of waiting is an extremely tall order to say the least. Yet here we have Colored Sands, Gorguts’s fifth album, and it’s clear that Gorguts are back again.

Krallice – Years Past Matter

Black metal is a curious beast; it can either be really beautiful and transcend the five senses we are born with and expose us to new pleasures previously unknown, or it can unlock seething vitriol and hatred, eschewing the misanthrope, violence, and racism for which the genre is notorious. Whatever the case, it’s easily one of the most controversial and centralized of all metal sub-genres. Every brand has its clique: trve kvlt, atmospheric, post, experimental, progressive, etc. All of these separate sub-sections stay within their limits, and so do the fans. Now there are some exceptions to the rule, of course, and there will always be overlap for those who love all metal, but as a whole metal fans — and fans of music in general — tend stick to their own little sphere. Krallice fall in the gray area; an area in which all boundaries are knocked down and the music encompasses far more genres and influences than ever thought.