Tech Death Thursday: Parius and Mordant Rapture
Alright tech fiends, strap yourselves in, because this week is fucking stacked. We’ve got sick new releases on deck from Parius and Mordant Rapture. I’m keeping the reviews short and sweet so you can get straight to the action with less BS, so let’s get to it.
First up is Parius, whose 2017 EP, Let There Be Light, was featured here last January. I spoke then about how the EP had represented a strengthening of their sound; if that’s the case, then The Eldritch Realm is a full-on evolution of it. I was a bit worried that the old pulp horror aesthetic they put forth with their cover art would be either glossed over entirely or terribly overused in the music, but they use it exactly as much as is needed. That foundation of melody-first tech death is still in place, but there are all sorts of new twists to it, doubling down on the progressive aspect and getting a whole lot weirder. “Into the Realm” is a rare breed of instrumental opener that doesn’t suck, sounding like it was pulled straight from a cheesy ’30’s horror flick. The tunes each have at least a little bit of funhouse spookiness worked in between melodic shredding and bits of dissonant chording, fully permeating “Between Hell and I” and “Crashing Black Moon” (the latter of which also features some prime riffing that will have Colors-era BTBAM fans frothing at the loins). A little bit of Rod Serling-style narration is the icing on the cake, opening and closing the album in a wonderfully fitting manner.
Perhaps the best part of all this is how accessible it all is; The Eldritch Realm, despite all its weird time signatures and bizarre vocalizations, is extremely friendly to casual listeners. This album is packed with rhythmic hooks and catchy melodies, and it never goes completely off the rails with either technical or progressive noodling. It’s a tight and streamlined package, and moreover, it’s a ton of fun. You can stream it in full right now over at Decibel, so you don’t have to take my word for it. Do yourselves a favor and pick this bad boy up when it releases tomorrow.
I’ve been meaning to talk about this next album for quite awhile now, and it’s well past time it got the TDT treatment. Mordant Rapture have exploded out of the gates with The Abnegation, one of the year’s most unabashedly “tech death” albums thus far. It’s hanging up there with Inferi and Unflesh in terms of pure instrumental aptitude, and the pace it sets is just as relentless as either of the aforementioned’s work.
The intro to “Unsightly Beast” starts off innocuously enough with a somber, low-key piano setting the scene. A swell of strings introduces the rest of the band to the mix for a fairly straightforward “big” intro, draped in a synth orchestra and laden with leads over a simple slow riff. Then they kick up the tempo and proceed to turn your face to pulled pork for the next 20 minutes. Those guitar licks cut with surgical precision, the toxic vocals joining the rhythm section in their measured but unstoppable pace. Where most bands would ditch the synths after the intro, Mordant Rapture work it into the meat of their sound. It serves as a melodic foundation for the rest of the band to build on, keeping the chaos reigned in. It’s an amazing ride through and through, and it should be at the top of any tech fan’s to-listen list. Stream it at that Bandcamp link below.
That’s all I’ve got for you this week, and I sincerely hope you enjoy at least one of these bands this week. Until next time,
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.