posted on 12/2005 By:
Delirium Endeavor’s Twelve Cusp has been in my stack of ‘reviews to do’ for some time now. Not because I’ve been struggling with it, but because their particular brand of Metal is one I really need to be in the right mindset to fully digest and appreciate. From the minute their fusion of Prog., Jazz and Metal first floated across my brain, I knew I needed to take my time and get to know the album over the coming weeks before actually writing about it.
Twelve Cusp is the band’s second full-length release over their 10yr life, and it’s a fine example of what I’d consider worthy instrumental Prog-Metal. Imagine Gordian Knot with more of a raw feel to it, and maybe a bit more straight forward. The Metal moments aren’t really heavy (apart from the riff 8:30 into the first track, but, sadly, it only lasts 5 seconds), and the lighter moments aren’t too fluffy or new-agey. There’s no flitting keyboards, guest instruments, or vocals to add to the mix either, so the listeners’ attention is directed squarely at the interplay between guitarist, bassist, and drummer.
During the album’s quieter numbers (track two, “Cancerian Moon”, and track four, “Gemini”), Delirium Endeavor sound like they’d fit right in place on a Jim Matheos solo album. I personally think they are strongest during these moments, as they really showcase their seamless integration of Jazz elements, and display their genuine songwriting abilities. The Metal parts of Twelve Cusp are solid overall, but at times I think they’d really benefit from adding another guitarist to fill out the sound, and to give six-stringer Jim Tasikas a break. It was almost as if I could feel his exhaustion by the end of the 18-minute first track. In fact, the length of the first song would be my main criticism of this album. It was nearly too much for my brain to digest as an introduction to the band, and the guitar bubbling in the last 3 minutes is something I now find myself jumping over to get to the next piece. The 11-minute closer, “Aquarius”, revisits the heavier themes of the first track, but in a more succinct manner, and does a nice job of bringing Twelve Cusp full circle.
Fans of Prog. Metal and those more open to experimentation should check this band out. According to their website, they’re nearly done with the next album, and apparently they’ve added a vocalist to the roster. I have fairly high standards for Prog-Metal vocals, so it should be quite interesting to see what this added element does for the future of Delirium Endeavor.
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