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[ALBUM REVIEW] MADROST ‘The Essence Of Time Matches No Flesh’

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Finding a metal sub-genre to lump Madrost into is not an easy task. They call themselves thrash, but there is quite a bit more going on here influence wisely. They fall into that same early naughties nebulous mix up of the Gothenburg sound and modern American extreme metal that gave us Arsis; Thine Eyes Bleed, The Black Dahlia Murder and the rest. They draw from further afield than a lot of those names though and have put together something interesting and enjoyable if not perfect.

Eyes of the Deceit opens things up as a pummeling pit annihilator, starkly laying out the bands strengths and weaknesses in the first few minutes of the album. The drum work is intense, playful and relentless. The shredding is competent and is semi-regularly harassed by snippets of eerie melody reminiscent of early Slayer. The soloing is pretty epic as well, check out the tail end of No Future for instance. One interesting thing is the occasional Meshuggah style screwy timing change, just enough not to turn it into a gimmick.

The vocals are where this album could improve. They have their moments, especially when Tanner is getting into a particularly fast paced rabid rant. For a lot of the album though they sound a little half cocked for the sake of intelligibility, leaving me feeling like I’m listening to some particularly angry spoken verse poetry.  For the speed and aggression present, it takes away something. I think they could benefit from a second vocalist.

Ultimately it’s a pretty solid performance. There’s a hell of a lot of competence here, paying homage to some of the best in the industry while not borrowing too much. I can see these guys as a diamond in the rough and a potential future classic. Buy it; it’s worth it.

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