Tech Death Thursday: Crator
Something big has fallen to Earth. Something heavy. Let’s dive deep into the Crator.
News and such:
- Allegaeon are streaming their newest, Proponent for Sentience, over at MS. I had to stop listening about halfway through because I wasn’t getting any work done, but god damn is it good. Pick that up tomorrow.
- Prog-death dudes Burial In The Sky have a teaser up for their new album, Persistence of Thought. So far, it’s sounding both chill and heavy, and I can totally get behind that. Look for it on November 4th.
- Perhaps you’d like some more “death” in your tech death? Then check out “Birthing the Deformity,” the newest song from Cognitive. It’s choppy, savage, and makes me want to punch people. Deformity is out on October 28th.
I’ve made my feelings on super groups pretty clear in the past, but here’s a quick recap: while they’re almost always a quick cash-in for big-name musicians, you’ll occasionally get something great when some lesser-known guys get together. It makes sense, of course, since there’s not much at stake financially for the latter. The musicians have a chance to flex artistic muscles and experiment in ways they might not get away with in their main projects, and the result can be spectacular.
That said, dick-crushing death metal isn’t outside the norm for any of the musicians involved with Crator. Featuring members of Origin, Gorguts, and Foaming At The Mouth, it should come as no surprise that The Ones Who Create : The Ones Who Destroy is pure genital devastation. Each of its four members are at the top of their game, their individual talents coming together to form something greater than the sum of its parts. Bassist Colin Marston and guitarist Jeff Leifer clash throughout the album’s run, ripping and snarling at each other like feral beasts before backing off and circling warily. The Origin representatives, John Longstreth and Jason Keyser, are as relentless as ever. Longstreth’s drumming retains its breakneck speed even during the album’s slowest parts (because quarter-time feel still deserves straight 32nd note bass drumming), and I’m still not convinced Keyser ever stops for breath once he starts a vocal passage.
None of that means anything if the writing isn’t up to snuff, but you already know it is. What’s really striking is how it’s written; it feels like they couldn’t decide whether or not they wanted to go more towards skronk or traditional death metal and said, “Fuck it, let’s do both.” The title track (above) serves as a pretty good sampling of the album at large. There aren’t many surprises in terms of structure- it ebbs and flows like any death metal song- but it has an agitated business that would feel at home in a Gorguts tune. Snare hits and rolls come at odd times and Martson’s high mid bass playing is a powerful presence, occasionally overtaking the guitar. It’s really cool hearing these tropes in a different setting; it’s something lesser musicians couldn’t do without it sounding like a mess, but Crator makes it sound easy.
All of these wonderful, ugly sounds are facilitated by fantastic production. Everything carries a hefty punch, but it doesn’t feel like it’s been brickwalled. It’s a tight package to be sure, but there’s enough room for everything to breath. You can pick out all the notes in those ugly chords on “The Sixth Genocide” without the strings crowding out the drums and vocals. It’s a pleasure to listen to in every sense.
The Ones Who Create : The Ones Who Destroy came completely out of left field and blew me away. It’s the complete package, with great ideas that have been perfectly implemented and great production to boot. I can see this landing on a lot of end-of-year lists, and it deserves to be heard. Follow Crator on Facebook and pick up the album at their Bandcamp. That’s all for this week, and until we meet again,
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