Tech Death Thursday: Caecus and Misanthropy
Following last week’s Warforged feature, I figured we’d highlight a couple more Illinois bands. Today, we’re checking out Caecus and Misanthropy.
- Speaking of Warforged, they have a new video out. This one’s a bit more on the “normal” side of the album’s spectrum, but it’s still pretty fuckin’ weird. I: Voice comes out on May 10th.
- Somebody made a tech death bot that samples Archspire to create tunes, and it’s a trip. Check out the 24/7 stream here.
- Protosequence has a new EP on the way, and you can check out a new song right now. No solid release date yet, but it’s coming sometime late this summer.
- If you like watching people who are ridiculously good at their instruments doing their thing, The Odious Construct has a new playthrough video out. Check out their last EP if you haven’t gotten around to it yet.
First up we have Champaign’s Caecus (not to be confused with the Scottish black/death outfit of the same name). Their 2017 album, The Funeral Garden, is a sleek and streamlined package of progressive tech death with a fairly unique sound. The foundation of this album is fast, aggressive, melodic tech death not unlike Minneapolis’s Aetheric, but it comes with a few twists. For one, the band’s note choice is prime, making use of big, lush 7th and 9th chords that give the music an exultant, spacey feel. The riffs are rarely linear, skipping strings and moving in directions that, while unexpected, are very pleasing to the ear. If you’ve got half an hour to spare, this is an excellent listen.
If you’re in the mood for a slower burn, you’ll want to give their newest album a shot. The latter half of The Funeral Garden saw the band diving into calmer waters, incorporating clean breaks and slower progressive motifs into the music. Caecus doubled down on that side of their sound for A Parting Current; while there are still plenty of blistering riffs to be had, the focus has shifted from speed and technical prowess to more emotive melodies and complex song structure. That smart note choice has only gotten better, and the slower, more serene nature of the music works well with the watery imagery. I do feel that this one drags a bit in places, but patient listeners will find the journey rewarding.
Now, if you’re looking for something a little more chaotic, then look no further than Chicago’s Misanthropy. Trying to characterize this band’s music is difficult; toss Gorguts, Desecravity, and Vektor into a blender, add a pinch of slam, and you’d end up with something close. There’s a lot going on in Abhorrent Metamorphosis, and it’s all… well, abhorrent (but in a good way).
Fair warning: the audio engineering on this one is pretty rough. Everything sounds a little squashed, and the low end in particular is pretty muddy. That said, while it’s a bit harsh to the ears, it doesn’t detract from the musicianship on display here. Big, chunky death metal riffing clashes violently with intricate thrash sections, all done with mind-bending time signature and tempo changes. Molten dissonant chords trade off with intense bursts of speed, supported with a formidable rhythm section and some gurgly vocals. I love the lead guitar work here, particularly on the latter half of the album when the thrash parts move to the forefront. Vektor fans will find a lot to like here, and I think anyone who was into last year’s Beast of Nod album will appreciate the variety of weird shit on Abhorrent Metamorphosis.
That’s all I’ve got for now; hopefully one of these bands tickled your fancy. If you live in the Chicago area and dug either of these bands, you can catch Caecus live on June 10th at the Cobra Lounge with Inanimate Existence, Warforged, and Wounds. Misanthropy will be joining Archspire, Inferi, Virvum, and Wormhole at Reggie’s on May 29th. I highly catching both recommend both if you have the chance.
Is your band tech as heck? Got a juicy piece of news or an upcoming release to watch? Send it my way at firstname.lastname@example.org and I’ll check it out. I might even talk about it.