Techsgiving 2018

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Today is Thanksgiving in the States, and as my thanks to you for listening to my incoherent ramblings each week (and as an apology for betraying your trust with folk music last week), I’ve got a veritable banquet of tech death ready for you today.


First on the docket is Moss Upon the Skull with their first full-length record, In Vengeful Reverence. Lacertilian and I spoke about this one last month on the supplemental podcast, and while I liked it well enough then, it’s really grown on me over the past few weeks. The band plays a kind of cerebral prog death that sounds like it would have been a natural fit for the early 2000’s scene in a post-Death/Cynic/Atheist world. You’ll hear them flirt with some of the ideas put forth by their forebears, but they never really conform to any preexisting formula; instead, they present these ideas in a new light with added touches of doom and black metal. Even this comparison feels inadequate, though, as I honestly can’t think of a good singular point of comparison for them. The album is a breath of fresh air with songwriting that is smart but unpretentious and musicianship that’s technical without being superficially flashy. Plus, it sounds fantastic; this album really does just have everything going for it. Don’t skip this one.Oh, and while you’re at it, check out their 2016 EP. It’s not as fully realized as In Vengeful Reverence, but it’s still top notch.


Keeping the sweet prog jams rolling we have Unreal Overflows, who dropped a spicy new album back in February that didn’t seem to garner a whole lot of attention. It’s about time we rectified that, because Latent is quite good. They carry much the same set of influences as Moss Upon the Skull, and while they adhere more closely to the groundwork laid by said influences than the former (right down the round bass tone and ninth arpeggios everywhere), they’re so good at it that you can’t really complain. They combine that old school sound with a more modern focus on downtuned grooves and some real ear worms in the melodies in ways that will tickle both your headbanging lizard brain and your reasoning frontal cortex. Fans of last year’s Moonloop and Contrarian albums will find a lot to like here, but even if you’re just into death metal in general, you’ll want to give Latent a spin or two.


Finally we have TDT alumni Solipsismo, following up last year’s all-out shred fest with a new EP. The release of Antología De Maldiciones was pushed back enough times that I had actually forgotten its release earlier this month, but I’ll be damned if the wait wasn’t worth it. While they didn’t go full Archspire on this one- only on the opening track- the playing and writing both feel like a big step up from the last album. The guitars haven’t lost any of their neoclassical flair, but it sounds to me like less emphasis was placed on dazzling the listener with virtuosity in favor of focusing on keeping you hooked on its melodies and fluid structure. Although the guitar is still very much the star of the show here, the vocals have been kicked up a notch as well as Gabriel Cuesta spits lyrics with incredible speed on “Meruem” and introduces some solid clean singing on the EP’s latter half. I’m a little shocked this one hasn’t caught on with the tech death world yet; if you’re a fan of the flashier side of the genre, then you need to get on this as soon as possible.


And that about does it for today! Hopefully at least one of these three tickled your fancy; if not, you can request a full refund at the email address below. If you want more from the bands, you can follow Moss Upon the Skull, Unreal Overflows, and Solipsismo at their respective Facebook pages.


Is your band tech as heck? Got a juicy piece of news or an upcoming release to watch? Send it my way at techdeathtovh@gmail.com and I’ll check it out. I might even talk about it.

 

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