Release DetailsLABEL Willowtip
RELEASED ON 2/17/2004
posted on 2/2004 By:
Let’s be blunt as blunt can be here. I’m going to start off by saying my reviewing “skills” cannot possibly do this record justice. I tend to feel more comfortable when presented with material that I am familiar with, and genres that I have had heard the cream of the crop and the turds at the bottom of the toilet, thus giving the band more than fair press on what they have decided to put to disc and make available to metal consumers. But the fact of the matter is that I chose this album primarily because it came from Willowtip, and secondly because it grabbed me and cocooned me in an intricate web of progressive and highly skilled death metal. When I hear the term “prog metal”, I usually think of the cheese that drips from chrome covered power metal. It’s just an association I’ve come to employ over the years. Sure, the musicianship in lots of prog is astounding. But the truth is, I like to listen to metal for reasons I deem more important, and that I believe should be mainstays in metal; Energy and heaviness. Capharnaum is a band of enormous skill that retains these 2 elements while showcasing a desire to forge ahead w/ the technical/ progressive death metal intensity and style of Death. I can’t even begin to describe the leadwork on this record. It’s sufficient, to say the least. It has a certain “vintage” feel to the works but it’s laid on top of these monster downtuned 7 string rhythms that give it a modern metal vibe as well. I’ve never heard metal this exact style before, so it’s hard for me to say “this is a complete masterwerk” or something like that, but I do know that this is a record that pulpified my ass by means of brilliant song construction and true musical talent. For someone who has basically thrived on the more brutal end of the spectrum, I can say this is a true feast for the senses that is farm fresh. Capharnaum utilize low end in the most intelligent of ways; there’s no mindless grinding or repetitive pit riffs really. It’s a politician’s polygraph test put to music. The range is incredible. The intricate soloing that is mixed moderately so it is careful not to dominate can suddenly drop to something so heavy and thick; like huge cables vibrating as they pull up a shipwreck from the depths of the ocean. This production is millennium all the way; crisp, tight, smooth, and loud.
This is about as professional a presentation of metal as I’ve heard in many moons. I’m dumbfounded by how quality this thing really is. The mere ten dollars I paid for it after hearing 2 songs from it makes me feel as if I’ve ripped the band off! You people need to hear this disc. Even if you don’t like “prog”, this most likely will change your mind. It’s not cheesy, it’s not covered in chrome, and there’s no clean vox. It’s death metal for the mind. This is a musician’s band through and through. Not only does Capharnaum have 100% of my respect, they also have 100% of my attention. HIGHLY WRECKOMMENDEAD.
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