Tech Death Thursday: Fractal Universe & Veiled in Sorrow


These EP’s are primed and ready to blow your brains out. Let’s tech!

First, some tech news you can use:

  • Strap yourselves in: Wormed have released another new song from. “Agliptian Codex Cyborgization” is just as weird as it sounds and twice as heavy. Krighsu will be out on March 25th.
  • First Fragment have FINALLY given us a release date for Dasein, along with the artwork. Look for it on May 20th, and peep the cover art and a lengthy trailer right here.
  • Minneapolis-based Invidiosus describe themselves as “anxiety-grind,” which is apparently another term for weird-ass death metal. Check out their new single here; whatever you want to call it, it’s damn fine. Also, free. Can’t argue with free.
  • Contrarian just put out a new album not too long ago, but they’re not content to take a break. They have begun work on To Perceive is to Suffer, due out next year and featuring Paul Masvidal of Death and Cynic fame.
  • …But who cares about any of that when you can have new Gorguts? The Canadian skronklords have released a snippet of Pleiades Dust as “Wandering Times,” which can be listened to here. As awesome as this bit is, I’m more curious to see how it’s going to fit into the whole song. Pleiades Dust will be out on May 13th via Season of Mist.

First up this week is Veiled in Sorrow. This little gem initially flew under my radar when it released at the beginning of the month, but I’m glad I caught it. The self-titled debut is a neo-classical shredder in the vein of First Fragment and Vale of Pnath, featuring some of the craziest guitar sorcery this year. This is a very guitar-centered album; while the other instruments are all impressive, their parts largely seem written to supplement the impressive lead guitar. The vocals are only truly prevalent on “Chiaroscuro,” featuring a call-and-response between the growls and an operatic soprano. Otherwise, their use is largely to add texture to the spots between solos; similarly, the drums and bass bend and bow to the whims of the lead playing.

While I’m sure it will sound incredibly self-indulgent to some peoples’ ears, it’s not entirely devoid of expression. If you let yourself be carried forth on that river of immaculate sweeps, you’ll find it takes some interesting turns. The riffs are varied and universally crushing, and the piano and classical guitar interludes work well to break up the action and add some character to the album. It’s not as much of a one-trick pony as it might seem on the surface, and while I know that Veiled in Sorrow won’t be for everyone, those with an appreciation for shred will get a lot of mileage out of it.

Tech death is almost always best served with a side of prog, and Fractal Universe are well aware of this. Boundaries of Reality shares a lot in common with Inanimate Existence’s A Never-Ending Cycle of Atonement, without the latter’s reliance on synth. The songwriting is both very intelligent and mercurial, with time signatures changing fluidly and frequently. The focus changes frequently, too; the instruments complement and play off each other with great ease. It’s always a pleasure to hear musicians of this caliber playing so naturally together. Each part is interesting to pick out from the others, but they all fit together perfectly as part of a complex puzzle.

It’s also a pleasure to hear this kind of variety on an EP. Each song is unique and showcases the band’s versatility. Opener “Mourning the Loss of a Dim Glance” features blistering tremolo leads over a rhythm that dredges itself from the shadows and skulks around corners; this is immediately followed by the bouncy “Tears of Misanthropy,” built around melodic hooks and harmonies. That’s not to say the band is scatterbrained- the songs are very different, sure, but there’s a consistency to their sound that’s evident when they’re all taken in together.

So there you have it! A pair of killer EP’s with their own distinct flavors and nuances. Don’t forget to check out Veiled in Sorrow and Fractal Universe on Facebook, and tell them the Toilet sent you.

Until next time,

Stay Tech

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