ALLEGAEON - Elements of the Infinite
July 9, 2014, a year ago
(Metal Blade Records)
Colorado melo-tech death metal merchants, Allegaeon, has a point to prove on its third full-length album, Elements Of The Infinite. With two new members (guitarist Michael Stancel and drummer Brandon Park), the revamped lineup is ready to climb to the top of the extreme technical death metal heap. On its ten tracks, the band weaves together complex rhythms and intricate dynamics with technicality and proficiency. Origin, Obscura, Soilwork and Arsis are all good reference points to Allegaeon’s overall sound. But the band’s secret weapon is its various orchestration and acoustic arrangements, which are nicely-placed between crushing riffs and pummeling rhythms. Lyrically and musically, the band continues its ominous sci-fi themed compositions of previous releases. Tracks such as “Dyson Sphere,” “Gravimetric Time Dilation” and “The Phylogenesis Stretch” tread this familiar territory. “Through Ages Of Ice — Otzi’s Curse,” about the discovery of an iceman mummy, incorporates some superbly-executed tribal drum rudiments. Throughout each track, the trade-off neoclassical shred-guitar solos between Greg Burgess and Stancel are jaw-dropping excellent. Ezra Haynes’s raspy, monotoned barks may be a bit limiting at times, but juxtaposed with the band’s melodic overtones, works well together. It’s difficult for even the best death metal band to make a prominent mark within this genre, but Allegaeon is well on its way.