As we reported last month, long-time NCS favorites Oblivion are returning with a new, self-titled album that’s currently slated for release on January 21, 2019. Also last month, the band released the new album’s first single, “True Awakening“, which was written (as they explained) “from the subjective perspective of the emerging ASI (Artificial Super Intelligence) as it is first awakening and becoming aware of its powers and the world it inhabits”. Fittingly, the song’s long introductory passage exudes an aura of ominous foreboding as it methodically piston-pounds the listener’s skull and swirls about like artificial neurons growing and seeking connections.
“True Awakening” proved to be an explosive lead-in to the album, its rhythms eventually shifting into a galloping gear, the music surging, battering, and thundering, with ghastly vocals augmenting the music’s atmosphere of blistering and brutish violence, and a solo at the end, both queasy and questing, leading into one final obliterating onslaught.
Oblivion has planned to release further singles every month from now up to the release date, and we’re getting to help spread the word about the second one today. The name of this one is “Forgotten Brotherhood“.
Thematically, this new third album forms a sequel to the band’s 2017 full-length, The Path Towards, and further expands on Oblivion’s vision of “a world run amok by artificial intelligence”, although the style of the music is (as they say) sonically closer to the band’s’s debut, Called To Rise. Yet the new record exceeds both of its predecessors in the range of extreme metal traditions they’ve woven through the changing experiences of the album’s nine tracks.
“Forgotten Brotherhood”, for example, is intricate, creatively exuberant, and technically impressive, but it’s anchored by regular bursts of absolutely massive jackhammering groove that tie everything together and stick the song in your head. That jarring, jolting, percussive power is hard to ignore, but so are the swirling and swarming arpeggios, the bursts of blaring dissonance and flurries of delirious fretwork, the rapidly boiling bass lines, and the flensing shrieks and gruesome roars. Equally interesting is the counterpoint that unfolds between the drum rhythms and the head-swirling machinations of the stringed instruments.
Before we get to the song stream, we’d like to share these words about the album by Oblivion founder Ted O’Neill:
“One of the hallmarks of the Oblivion sound has been the blending of many styles of extreme music. Encompassing elements of Black Metal, OSDM, Technical Death Metal as well as Classical music that may be thought of as Modern Chamber Music. Nick Vasallo‘s background as a PhD in music theory and his experience as a classical composer gives us a huge boost in creating our material. So, for this album we really wanted Nick to go all the way with it and do what he does best. He is tremendous at creating tension, counter point and brutal arrangements while maintaining a structure that is still accessible.
“On that same note Ben Orum is a great writer in his own respect. Ben brings to the table the ability to create crushing rhythms and massive chord progressions that create the backbone of many of the songs. Luis “The Human Drum Machine” Martinez is just a unique talent with an eclectic style that blends perfectly with what we do. So, the idea was to really have everyone bring to the table their best skills and blend it all together.
“I think people are going to love this album. It’s very diverse but doesn’t lose focus. It’s brutally heavy throughout but not fatiguing. It’s dark and in spots bleak but not depressing as it is LOADED with hook after hook and tons of groove.”
Damn right it is.
Check out the new single below. The album will be limited to 500 physical copies, and the first 100 will be signed by the band, so don’t delay.