A few days ago, we started a post by saying, “Sometimes when we listen to metal, we just want to get mentally pulverized.” If you never feel that way, well, please go on about your business and come back tomorrow when we’ll probably be writing about something else.
But today, we’re in that mental-pulverization mood. And in case you’re also in the mood to have your brains scrambled, have we found the right short-order cooks for you: Aeon and Exhale. Coincidentally, both bands are from Sweden. They each employ different techniques on the grill, but their new albums both get the job done in masterful fashion.
With a few of the inevitable line-up changes, Aeon (pictured above) has been playing for more than a decade, and Path of Fire (released on Metal Blade) is their third full-length album and the first since 2007. The album was mixed by Erik Rutan and mastered by the ubiquitous Alan Douches.
The name of the game is technical death metal, and it’s as sweet as it is punishing. With few exceptions, the songs depend on low-end, driving riffs and hammering double-kicks that put us in mind of an inexorably charging train, scattering sparks and belching smoke. The picking is fast and dynamic, yet there’s no flash-for-the-sake-of-flash going on here — each song is built around a defined rhythmic structure designed to burrow heavy grooves into your skull. (more after the jump, including songs to stream . . .)