Friday, March 2, 2012

Heresiae - Heresiae EP

Heresiae is an Italian death metal band that gave me what is probably the best death metal record I’ve heard since Tomb of the Mutilated. I actually received this over two months ago but was too damn lazy to actually sit down and listen to it. Now that I’ve heard it, I feel horrible for not writing this review sooner because the world needs to know about this! OH MY GOD YOU NEED TO HEAR THIS RECORD, I’M NOT KIDDING!! But this review isn’t going to be me just gushing and raving over this record, I’m going to tell you exactly WHY this album hit me in the face hard and why I love it.

I initially just skipped the intro track and went straight into It’s Only Human Frailty. The utter EXPLOSION of chaos and anger knocked me out of my seat and gave me that adrenaline rush that only a handful of other bands have given me on my first listen. The second song, It’s Only Human Frailty, is probably my favorite (although all of them are amazing). I don’t know what they’re called, but Heresiae uses A LOT of those really um…abstract chords. It’s those types of chords that bands only use to increase the tension of the moment. But Heresiae uses them a lot; and I can’t put into words how much I love it. There are a lot of traditional death metal bands that I love and that have no faults, but their strengths don’t go as high as I would like. Some of those bands include Morbid Angel, Cannibal Corpse, Grave, Vomitory, Immolation, Deicide, and many others. I think that the biggest thing that Heresiae has that the other (older) bands don’t is extremely high-quality sound recordings. You listen to classics like Altars of Madness, Butchered at Birth, Leprosy, Here in After, Seven Churches, and Into the Grave, and although the music is astonishing, it’s still somewhat obscured by the shitty production quality (for some it’s more than others, for me it bothers me in death metal, but not in black metal).

All of the instruments are CRYSTAL clear and none of them are overpowering in the slightest bit. As far as how each individual instrument SOUNDS, I would have to say the guitars are my favorite. They have a higher-pitched sound with a tiny bit of crunch on top. But they mainly sound very smooth even though you can tell that there is a TON of distortion put on them. Probably my favorite thing about the drums is that the snare is turned up louder than the rest of the set with the BOOMING kick drums being right behind. You can hear the bass in the background very well, but it’s more on the deeper side, so you won’t have as much of an easier time hearing the actual bass guitar. But you can tell that it’s there with the amount of bass the album shoves down your ears and throat.

It seems that almost all of the Italian death metal bands that I’ve heard are (in some way or another) connected; especially with Fleshgod Apocalypse and Dark Lunacy). Just like with Hour of Penance, I was expecting this band to be like a side-project of one of the Fleshgod members (even though Hour of Penance wasn’t really a side-project, but you get what I mean). Turns out that I can’t find ANY connection with ANY other band with ANY of the members! So that means that a completely new group of enraged Italian metalhead has surfaced! I’m not even going to TRY to choose my favorite member because they’re all amazing and obviously have some experience when it comes to writing music.

The vocalist has a deep growl. Not a SUPER deep growl (like Amon Amarth, Opeth, and Amorphis), just a deep growl. I actually think that a SUPER deep growl wouldn’t sound as good with this type of high-tension, chaotic music as a more mid-ranged (but still deep) growl would. Obviously you can tell just by listening to him that this guy’s vocals are very well developed and perfected, which is something that more vocalists should do BEFORE they start recording music instead of perfecting it during the first few years of their career. The drummer only did one thing, and that was peeling my face off and ripping it to shreds with his drum set. He has one of THE BEST blast beats I have ever heard in the metal genre; and I’m not kidding either. I’m sure that even those of you that still have your hearts set to blast beat legends like Dave Lombardo, all the Fleshgod drummers, and Mike Smith, will be able to say that this guy is GOOD. And I know that skill isn’t everything, in fact, it’s not NEARLY as important as creativity. I mean look at all of the bands that had mediocre instrumental skills but had creativity beyond belief like The Beatles, The Grateful Dead (excluding Garcia), AC/DC, KISS, and Aerosmith! Creativity alone is good by me, but if you add on over-the-top instrumental skills, you get Heresiae.

Besides the musicians themselves being creative, when I listen to this EP, I don’t hear a bunch of musicians…I hear A BAND. This EP is one of the best death metal records I’ve heard since Tomb of the Mutilated as well as being one of the best I’ve ever heard, period. I would give this a PERFECT score for blowing me away and…if this thing came out last year, HOW COME THEY HAVEN’T GOTTEN ANY MAJOR ATTENTION?? Show this to EVERYONE so that we can give these guys the credit they deserve and so that I can see them (hopefully soon) in my hometown of Seattle.