Faceless Burial, Speciation review (Dark Descent Records / Me Saco Un Ojo Records 2020)

With Speciation, Faceless Burial reconciles the storied past with the calamitous contemporaneous world to show that, while the level of suffering is bad now, it is not new.

The three ambassadors who make up this band from Australia round out their first lustrum with a stabbing assault of inescapable musical kismet. If you had been looking and listening you would have known it was coming because the earlier work, Grotesque Miscreation (2017) and Multiversal Abattoir (2018) both, shook the elements and rattled the environment in a new creative space that maintained a distinct and obvious homage.

The average song length has ticked up a bit with Speciation, clocking in at around six minutes, and that is all for the better. The writing on the new album demonstrates increased depth of process compared to the earlier work. While the songs here certainly maintain the aggression and crack heard before, the arc of the expression is clearer and stronger over the length of each piece.

This set opens with a blast of energy and does not have an intro bit like the earlier albums did. “Worship” is a battering ram at the front with all elements aligning in a show of force. The melody and thread of the song appears just before the one minute mark, and the drama unfolds from there – a story shown in music and told in narrative. There is a driving force, there are external smashes that periodically disrupt the flow, and a then there is a recurring current (or two) in guitars and percussion that weaves in and out. This basic structure plays well in the rest of the album, and it is a stylistic element practically unique to Faceless Burial. You can certainly recognize them by it. There are six entries and my mind processed them in order, in pairs. The titled track does stand out (to me) because of its doom elements and clever riffs arrangements, plus the lead work in the fourth minute is inspired. This album is one to keep in regular rotation. Recommended.

Out this Friday, August 7, you can get one track now on Spotify to tide you over (the earlier albums are there, too). All of the physical versions can be discovered through the links below.

Links.

https://www.facebook.com/facelessburial/

https://facelessburial.bandcamp.com/

https://darkdescentrecords.bandcamp.com/

http://www.darkdescentrecords.com/store/

https://www.mesacounojo.com/

https://mesacounojo.bandcamp.com/

Faceless Burial, Speciation review (Dark Descent Records / Me Saco Un Ojo Records 2020)

Lantern, Dimensions review (Dark Descent 2020)

The new release from death metal purveyors Lantern is a twist on a tale and voyage into inner space.

A veteran band from Kuopio, Finland – the interior – Lantern (using their stage names) is Cruciatus on guitars and bass, Necrophilos singing, J. Poussu on percussion, and St. Belial playing guitar. Formed in 2007 after the earlier band Cacodaemon ended its existence, the death metal regulars are now into their third full-length release.

The album starts off surprisingly melodic and even a little hooky with the opening pleadings of “Strange Nebula.” It is a eerie vibe with a Savatage montage feel at first, then the vocals begin – they are coarse but decipherable and are carefully cocooned by the swirling hornets of guitars. Slightly past the middle, there is a Venomesque change followed by a crunchy riff and an ethereal guitar transition. There is a lot going on in this song and it keeps you off balance. It also keeps you listening.

There are epic moments of soaring themes juxtaposed with nasty punk bursts and generously spaced blistering guitar peels. The arc of the album is to plant a stake at the beginning, accelerate toward the center and then launch into the epic closer. “Monolithic Abyssal Dimensions” is a fourteen minute journey into darkness for the purpose of excavating the darkened terrain of schizophrenic psyche. It chips away at your brain like a madman with a rock hammer attacking an ancient cliff searching for meaning. There is a sustained insistence and at the same time an active musical ratcheting and clutch-pop shifts that make you spin. The song is unsettling in every way, and when it is over you want to listen again because Lantern has clawed its way under your skin. Recommended.

You can get Dimensions right now directly from Dark Decent Records (Shop tab) or through Bandcamp (links below).

Links.

www.facebook.com/lantern666

darkdescentrecords.com

facebook.com/DarkDescentRecords

darkdescentrecords.bandcamp.com

Lantern, Dimensions review (Dark Descent 2020)