Release DetailsLABEL N/A
RELEASED ON 1/1/2007
Clustered Dead Ending Corridors
posted on 3/2007 By:
Melodeathrash. That haphazard generic sea where hundreds limply founder and are forgotten. That chalice of blistering, textured aggression which actually doesn't need or use thrash except as a slap. The music that needs no more champions. The music that Italian quintet Eyeconoclast have evidently set themselves to mastering. Theirs is an unenviable position, and one that I would have thought is almost too contested for this latest demo, Clustered Dead Ending Corridors.
The title track opener boasts a quivering, molten-hot guitar tone and punchy as hell drums which feature washy, clear cymbals, triggered but not overloud bass drums and acoustically rendered snare and toms. The bass hides, but makes itself known when supporting the more intense, staccato rhythm guitar, and the vocals occupy that amorphous twilight-zone somewhere inside but outside the mix. In all, it is an excellently clear production and an initially pleasing effort from the band itself. The goody-bag doesn't empty there however. All five tracks tumble entertainingly along like an incinerating car flipping at, oh, about seventy, with everything that might entail. Blazing dual harmonies and bridging solos splinter off at a few keystone sections like flashing wing-mirrors tossed into the air to catch our undivided attention, but the body of this short musical crash is comprised of the expected. We get treated to a boneshaking that is mostly the aggressive, rolling melodic death metal most have been familiar with since Slaughter of the Soul or The Jester Race, with newer sounding staccato breakdowns that, like the halting lurch of a high bounce in a somersaulting crash, is crushingly intense but blessedly brief. Such is the energy of the general pace and flow of the songs here that i'm fondly and often reminded of early Soilwork and mid-era The Crown. While Eyeconoclast aren't immediately as catchy or fun as either, their slick production here is endearing to repeated listens. The solid baseline quality of the riffs, melodies and turbulent rhythms make Clustered Dead Ending Corridors surprisingly appealing, even if we have heard it all before. "Overload 5790" for example, which some may know from a Terrorizer cover CD, comes off almost like an Intestine Baalism track with a mix of sensible, blast-beat death classicism and dreamy, whirlwind melodies poured from lead and backing guitars alike.
Here's my big but. The one facet of Eyeconoclast's sound that is most likely to set them apart from the crowd is also the one that is most controversial. The vocals, big surprise. I'd be rolling my eyes if I weren't so discomfited. 'Synder' really pushes the boat out here with his vocals; roaring a variated if paper-thin spectrum of voices that go from some low growls and mid-ranged ugly rasps which are par for the course, to clean vocals in every track barring "Overload 5790". It will depend entirely on taste, but I personally can do without the latter. It is as if Synder forgets he is in a death metal band and, in that lapse, James Hetfield enslaves his mind and vocal cords as if desperate to turn all that shines into filth. Anyone familiar with Beyond the Embrace will recognise this effect, but the juxtaposition between brutality and almost rockabilly boyishness ultimately fails here. It isn't that Synder is bad, but the frequency and uncanny accuracy of his Hetfield impression is an unpleasant clash of identities, and the weak, thoroughly un-guttural low end growls are as unconvincing as a limp-wristed and fringed deathcore frontman.
I can't help but feel that Eyeconoclast have got something of an identity to them. Although first listens smack too sweetly of Metallica (such are the charms of the vocals; the only culprit in that criticism), the rest of the music speaks for itself. Generic it may be, but worthless it isn't. I for one will be interested to hear what they put on the table with their forthcoming debut.
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