Apr 192011

(Today, our UK contributor Andy Synn follows yesterday’s retrospective on Becoming the Archetype with a review of the band’s new album, Celestial Completion.)

Perhaps Becoming The Archetype’s most ambitious album yet begins with the strange, symphonic introduction of “The Resonant Frequency Of Flesh”. Haunting choral voices and a sweeping Danny-Elfman-aping score backed by pounding drums and punchy slabs of guitar, which segues seamlessly into “The Magnetic Sky”, juxtaposing Jason Wisdom‘s familiar, powerful roar with a stunning clean vocal refrain, the first incidence of prominent clean vocals since The Physics Of Fire. The oceanic rise and fall of crushing heaviness and sinuous guitar work showcases the band’s joyous song-writing talents, indulging both their love of metallic force and bright, shining melody.

Internal Illumination” is perhaps the most purely death metal track the band has done on an album since their Terminate Damnation days, replete with hellishly low gutturals, gripping blast-beat sections and an utterly crushing ending slowdown that drags the listener’s ears through a mire of sludgy riffing and dragging drum fills. It also employs the newly developed blackened screams which are now part of the band’s vocal arsenal, adding further variety to their multi-faceted, expressive vocal arrangements.  (more after the jump . . .) Continue reading »

Apr 182011

(Andy Synn is back with another SYNN REPORT. Today, the subject is Becoming the Archetype, and Andy discusses the band’s discography leading up to the newest release, Celestial Completion. Tomorrow we’ll have Andy’s review of that album.)

Becoming The Archetype, the four piece Progressive death metal band from Georgia, have gone through numerous line-up changes in their time, yet still consistently deliver vibrant, distinctive albums of stunning musicianship and complex compositions based around a core of crunching, shredding guitar, intricate, growling bass-lines, subtle yet dominating drums and the terrifying, lion-like roar of front-man Jason Wisdom.

Weaving in and out of this maelstrom of metallic might are the extra (yet never superfluous) elements which serve to add yet another string to the band’s progressive bow. Complex keys, piano and organ, transcendent clean singing, buzzing electronics, all tied together in a convoluted, genre-ambiguous package that at all times bleeds passion and sincerity.

With four albums under their belt so far, the band have carved themselves out a distinctive and instantly recognisable identity, despite the sheer variety of styles and approaches they employ. Terminate Damnation was their original exploration of controlled chaos and violent emotion, The Physics Of Fire” a labyrinthine mosaic of enigmatic musicianship and progressive drive, Dichotomy a cryptic synthesis of the band’s history and renewed aggression, with Celestial Completion a tangled yet profound fusion of old and new influences which opens up new doors for the band’s future.  (more after the jump, including sample songs from each album . . .) Continue reading »

Feb 272011

We’re jumping the gun on this post, since the month doesn’t end until tomorrow. Why? Uh, because this post is ready to go and we don’t have anything else finished for today yet. Work and other shit interfered with our grand plans for a Sunday post.  We might still get another one up later today, but for now, feast your eyes on the barrage of metal headed our direction.

What we do with these installments of METAL IN THE FORGE is collect news blurbs and press releases we’ve seen over the last 30 days (or in this case, the last 27 days) about forthcoming new albums from bands we know and like (including updates about releases we’ve included in previous installments of this series), or from bands that look interesting, even though we don’t know them yet. And in this post, we cut and paste the announcements and compile them in alphabetical order.

This isn’t a cumulative list, so be sure to check the Category link called “Forthcoming New Albums” on the right side of this page to see forecasted releases we reported in previous installments. This month’s list begins right after the jump. Look for your favorite bands, or get intrigued about some new ones. There’s some awesome shit on the way. Continue reading »

Feb 152011

That eye-catching piece of art above is the cover for Celestial Completion, the next album by Atlanta’s Becoming the Archetype. The original painting was done by Dan Seagrave with art direction from Ryan Clark at Invisible Creature (if that name sounds familiar, that’s the same Ryan Clark who’s the frontman for Demon Hunter). Looks like, when the rapture comes, there will be some interruptions in shipping traffic.

We thought this band’s 2008 album, Dichotomy, was an interesting dish of progressive death metal. The new single they released in 2009 — “Necrotizing Fasciitis” — in addition to being an inventively named piece of music with an unusual metaphor at the core of its lyrics, was a promise of even more interesting things to come. It turned the brutality dial up more than a few notches and jettisoned most of the prog influences, but still included some nice tech-death flourishes.

Now, as a teaser for the next album, the band have released a single for streaming. It sounds almost nothing like “Necrotizing Fasciitis”, but it’s growing on us. And it’s just the first of three teasers we’ve stapled together in this post.

For our second one, we’ve got a mix of the music from the next release by Finland’s awesome Moonsorrow, and to finish off the post, there’s a clip from the forthcoming DVD by Cannibal Corpse. Hey, you can’t say we don’t bend over backwards to bring you variety in metal. (all this stuff is after the jump . . .) Continue reading »

Feb 012011

The first month of the year has come and gone. January brought those of us in Seattle some typically ass-sucking winter weather, though it wasn’t nearly as bad as the brutality dished out by the weather gods on our metal brothers and sisters in the Midwest and Northeast of the U.S. And of course, our readers ins places like Russia, and Finland, and Sweden are probably laughing their asses off reading our complaints about our winter weather. So, we’ll just shut up about that.

Besides, January brought all sorts of great new metal to our tender ears, so who gives a shit about the weather anyway? And you know what else January brought? It brought news of still more metal goodness on the way — great bursts of audio sunshine in our collective futures that will part these winter clouds and leave them whimpering in cloudy tatters.

Okay, maybe we should leave poetry to the poets and just get on with this next monthly installment of METAL IN THE FORGE, where we collect news blurbs and press releases we’ve seen over the last 30 days about forthcoming new albums from bands we know and like, or from bands that look interesting, even though we don’t know them yet. And in this post, we’ve cut and pasted the announcements and compiled them in alphabetical order. Look for your favorite bands, or get intrigued about some new ones:

AJATARRA: “AJATTARA — the Finnish band featuring former AMORPHIS frontman Pasi Koskinen (a.k.a. Itse Ruoja Suruntuoj) — will release its seventh album, Murhat (“Murders”) on February 2 via Osasto-A Records. Murhat is available for streaming in its entirety on the AJATTARA Facebook page.”  (much more after the jump . . .) Continue reading »

Jan 012011

HAPPY NEW YEAR!  Did you see what we did?  We had to change the logo for this edition of SICKNESS.  Because 2010 is behind us, and the new year lies ahead.

We spent the last 30 days, as we’ve been doing for the last year, collecting news blurbs and press releases about forthcoming new albums from bands we know and like, or from bands that look interesting, even though we don’t know them yet. And in this post, we’ve cut and pasted the announcements and compiled them in alphabetical order.

All of our previous monthly updates can be found via the “Forthcoming Albums” category link on the right side of our pages, and because we’re not keeping a cumulative list, you might want to check the last couple months of these posts if you want to get a full picture of what’s coming. The list that follows, in alphabetical order, are albums we didn’t know about at the time of our last installment when November ended, or updated info about albums we’d previously heard were on the way. And be forewarned: This is a really long list. There’s a massive slag of new metal coming our way, and man, does it look hot.

So, without further ado, let’s get started. See if there’s anything on the list that makes you moist, or tumescent, or just generally slobbery.

ABORTED: “Good news is that we are starting pre-productions for our upcoming record on January 4th. This means we will demo all the songs for the record, make sure everything sounds good and make the necessary adjustments to make sure they are all more lethal than a chainsaw in Mr. Leatherface’s hands. We’re all very excited about the material thus far and can’t wait to get this over with and proceed to the actual recordings later this year. Expect a fall 2011 release through our culprates in mayhem Century Media.”

AGNOSTIC FRONT: “The Godfathers of New York Hardcore, Agnostic Front, have just finished recording their highly anticipated follow up to their 2007 release, Warriors. The yet to be titled album features 13 new powerful and anthemic songs laid down by Erik Rutan (Madball, Goatwhore, Cannibal Corpse) at his Mana Recording Studio in Tampa, FL under the watchful guide of producer Freddy Cricien of Madball. The record was mastered by Alan Douches (Nile, Mastodon) and will be released in Europe of March 4, 2011 and in North America on March 22, 2011.”

(the list continues after the jump . . .)

Continue reading »