Wednesday, 12 August 2015

Album Review: Archaea - 'Catalyst'

Independent Release
Genre: Melodic Death/Thrash Metal

Track Listing:

1. Omnicide
2. Silhouette
3. Vacuum
4. Cryosphere
5. Pyrochrysalis
6. Salt
7. Quad Damage
8. His Wanted Position
9. Helios Ascend
10. Sol

Unsigned bands can often be looked to for those wanting to find a bit of creativity in the metal scene. Archea’s debut album showcases a strong-minded band with a healthy degree of passion for their craft, and the kind of creativity that any music fan likes to hear. ‘Catalyst’ opens with ‘Omnicide’, which displays an early In Flames meets Children Of Bodom strain of melodic death metal, but with a hefty thrash influence in the mix. The song suffers from some questionable rhythmic transition and a more questionable sound mix. Call me fussy, but a lot of the cymbal overhang heard throughout this record messes with the keyboard flourishes and guitar riffs at points, but once I’m able to look past this issue, this album offers a lot. The songwriting on show is of a good level, as shown on ‘Vacuum’ and the more thrash oriented track ‘Cryosphere’.  There are truly savage riffs and some great drum work on show here, and the vocal style is as in-your-face as you could want. Occasionally the melodies take on an almost eastern sounding guise. Look to ‘Pyrochrysalis’ as a good example, which shows a musical vocabulary that could be put to greater and greater use on future releases. The closing track ‘Sol’ is a shining surprise; a choir-based track that promises a bright future for this band. I’m sure there will be, too. Just as long as they calm down with the cymbal overhang on their next release!

Rating: 7/10

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