Release DetailsLABEL N/A
RELEASED ON 12/3/2004
Solace of Requiem
posted on 1/2005 By:
Staggering and dissonant, Virginia's Solace of Requiem are attempting to revitalize an interest in old school death metal by drawing influences from bands like Morbid Angel. Imagine the slower tracks on Domination with nostalgic production. There's definitely another strong influence although I'm unable to put my finger on it at the moment.
The one problem is, I can't say it always sounds that great. Structurally it's okay, but the the guitar solos and leads sound mismatched with the rest of the music, almost like they took the guy and put him in a different recording room and just told him to let loose without giving him a clue as to what the hell the song was supposed to sound like. Even some of the basslines sound out of place. "Deceiver" almost lifts a riff directly from Cannibal Corpse, only played at half the speed. Maybe that's the cause of my disinterest in the album - it's simply too slow for how unremarkable the musicianship is at times. Played at a faster tempo, these songs might pique my interests more. That song, though, also hosts one of the band's more accomplished parts at its end. "Stir No Echo", being almost doomy, is also well performed, with the song arranged around a hammer-on/tapping melody and a harmonic which sort of proves to be a definitive staple throughout. The solo, although just as chaotic and unruly as before, fits in with greater ease on this track. So basically, when things match up, they match up well and are totally rewarding. The production on the mid-growling vocals is more than fair, as the echoing accents Solace of Requiem's aim towards classic death metal, but while trying to achieve this sound the guitars sound cluttered or even drowned out amongst the prominent bass and noisy cymbal. I'm completely baffled on "The Ocean North" though, which has the sound of waves crashing on a shore while the band riffs beneath it. Even though it fades out, I kept anticipating it'd make some sort of irritating reprisal. Which it actually does, painfully, towards the end.
The demand for this style isn't at its pinnacle at the moment, but they haven't wronged the genre in one way or another. Next time around, I'd like to hear the band speed up a little and contrast it with their slower melodies, which they pull off skillfully, and also hold on to their intricate breaks. Maybe just pair them up together more and establish a stronger dialogue between the guitar and bass. So while this band has a ways to go before they're earth-shattering, Solace of Requiem have the right idea what what they're doing and can only improve. A welcome listen in any case.
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