Xerath is one of our favorite UK metal bands. Their 2009 release was called “I” (that’s a Roman numeral one). We liked that album so much that we’ve written about Xerath here, here, and here in the past. If you haven’t listened to Xerath before, here’s their own description of what they do (which is pretty accurate): “Xerath is a modern cutting-edge orchestral metal band – combining crushing metal riffs and grooves with cinematic symphonic arrangements.” For short, they call the sound “orchestral groove metal” or “chug-score”.
Think of an amalgamation of Strapping Young Lad, Meshuggah, and Dimmu Borgir. Think of the kind of syncopated guitar rhythms that make djent fanboys slobber combined with meaty melodeath riffs and epic keyboards.
Xerath has finished work on a new album, entitled “II”. It’s due for release by Candlelight Records on May 3. And the reason for this post is that yesterday Xerath made the first track from that album available for streaming, plus they revealed the cover art for the album, which is an eye-catcher. We’ve got the song and the artwork after the jump . . .
First, the album cover:
Now, the song. It’s the first track from the new album, “United To Defy”. It’s . . . well . . . uh . . . oh fuck, I’ll just use the damned word: It’s epic.
UPDATE: Some of the comments on our original post didn’t care for the presence of the girl in the album art above. As my NCS collaborator Alexis then reminded me, this may represent a theme that began with the band’s first album. So, here’s the cover for that one, too: