Unhuman
Unhuman


4.5
superb

Review

by David B. USER (1 Reviews)
January 8th, 2014 | 27 replies


Release Date: 11/01/2013 | Tracklist

Review Summary: Unhuman managed with their first album to be a force to be reckoned with. Their first LP is a technical death metal gem and one of the finest albums to have been released in 2013.

It is getting pretty hard to be blown away by a technical death metal album these days. From the machinelike approach of newcomers like Rings of Saturn to brutal death veterans like Origin or Deeds of Flesh, almost every possible facet of the genre has been pushed to its extreme limits. However, and fortunately too, there is, one in a while, a small group of individuals whose ideas seem to transcend almost everything that has been created before them in order to create something unique and absolutely addictive. Montreal’s Unhuman falls in this category.

Formed by Youri Raymond (Cryptopsy, ex-Porno Coma, ex-Secret Chiefs 3) in 1995, Unhuman has been creating music for over fifteen years without ever having a proper LP to speak about. Arriving as a late contender in 2013, Raymond, backed with Kevin Chartré (Beyond Creation, Brought By Pain) on guitars, Alex Dupras (The Plasmarifle) on drums and Matt Bérubé (Porno Coma) on the 7-string bass finally managed to release their first LP, aptly named Unhuman. As cliche as it sounds, they sincerely couldn't have chosen a better name for it, as it really encapsulates the insanity of their sound.

Music-wise, one of the main strengths of this album is the fact that Unhuman managed to create memorable and varied songs, a thing that is sometimes hard to come-by in a genre that is over-saturated with guitar sweeps and oceans of blast-beats. Every note from the guitars has its purpose, be it to create neck-breaking riffs (Psychotic Afterlife) or to create intricate and melodic atmospheres (Secheresse), all while being technical without ever going over the board. Kevin Chartré should also be credited for his unique style of soloing which gives the music a distinctive edge throughout the album. The 7-string bass from Bérubé is also impressive, most of the time following its own lines and giving a solid, meaty, backbone to the songs. He manages to shine on almost every song, especially on the instrumental [in]Human Being. As for Dupras’ performance on drums, it’s nothing short of inspiring, creating intricate patterns and fills during the 10 songs on the album all while being varied in its speed, from the open and eerie beginning of Secheresse to the mosh inducing État d’Controle.

However, one thing that really manages to separate Unhuman from its competitors are the vocals. While they may be an aquired taste, the performance of Youri Raymond is absolutely phenomenal. Using high-pitch screams, to growls, gurgles and everything in between, he seems like a complete maniac, something that is reminiscent of Matthew ‘’Chalky’’ in the early Psycroptic records. The duration and intensity of his screams is also something that should be noted as it manages to create intense build-ups and crescendos like at the ending of Secheresse, bringing every instrument together in a deadly combination.

Mixed and mastered by Chris Donaldson from Cryptopsy with the help of Mathieu Marcotte from Augury, the overall sound on this album feels precise without being sterile, which is an achievement in itself in the technical death metal field. The crystal clear guitars manage to pack a punch while leaving plenty of space for the rumbling of the 7-string bass. As for the drums, they actually sound like they’re played by a human being and are not overbearing in the overall mix.

In conclusion, Unhuman managed with their first album to be a force to be reckoned with. Their first LP is a technical death metal gem and one of the finest albums to have been released in 2013. It is still probably too soon to proclaim it to be a classic of the genre, but one thing is certain, Unhuman certainly have a brilliant future ahead of them. Highly recommended.


user ratings (91)
Chart.
4
excellent

Comments:Add a Comment 
Hypochondria
January 8th 2014


58 Comments

Album Rating: 4.5

Album is streaming for free at: http://unhumanofficial.bandcamp.com/
First review, constructive criticism appreciated as english is not my first language

conesmoke
January 8th 2014


5275 Comments


good review, sounds like an interesting album. pos'd

Mister Twister
January 8th 2014


1775 Comments


why is the guy on the album cover vomiting christmas lights

No but seriously, I was surprised this had no review up until this point, given that this has been receiving a fair bit of attention.

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Shuyin
January 8th 2014


11973 Comments


nicely written review, i could use some new techy dm

climactic
January 8th 2014


19839 Comments


the one song i heard from this was a mindfuck. will check, no expectations

titanslayer
January 8th 2014


2043 Comments

Album Rating: 2.5

I'm really surprised this is just now getting reviewed

titanslayer
January 8th 2014


2043 Comments

Album Rating: 2.5

I heard a few tracks from this a while back they were really solid, I have yet to listen to the full album though.

manicmonkey
January 8th 2014


459 Comments


If you guys haven't already, listen to the vocals at the end of Mutants War, around 3:20. Outrageous!

Funeralopolis
January 8th 2014


11767 Comments


hmmm this sounds pretty poop

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Hypochondria
January 9th 2014


58 Comments

Album Rating: 4.5

Thanks for the feedback guys! Crazy thing about the vocals is that he manages to pull them off live perfectly

DePlazz
January 9th 2014


62 Comments

Album Rating: 3.5 | Sound Off

A logical extension of the current Quebec tech/prog death scene, obvious similarities with bands like Beyond Creation and Brought by Pain, and a 'French' & 'Gorodian' feel. Generic to some extent but with flashes of originality, overall a refreshing and catchy album. Don't dig the vox that much but they are special.

KILL
January 9th 2014


72086 Comments


heard 1 song vocals suck bye

Digging: Steve Hackett - Out of the Tunnel's Mouth

titanslayer
January 9th 2014


2043 Comments

Album Rating: 2.5

Yeah the vocals bother me too, probably why I didn't listen to the whole thing.

fromtheinside
January 9th 2014


19029 Comments

Album Rating: 1.0

this is like technical borecore

Digging: Ibex Throne - Ibex Throne

psyclonus
January 10th 2014


139 Comments

Album Rating: 4.5 | Sound Off

good review, great album

VinVal
January 11th 2014


898 Comments

Album Rating: 3.5

well executed tech-death. sounds alot like Psycroptic's Scepter of the Ancients.

Digging: Sigh - Ghastly Funeral Theatre

Jacquibim
Contributing Reviewer
January 15th 2014


15015 Comments

Album Rating: 3.0 | Sound Off

Instrumentation on this is really good but the vocals are so damn over the top.

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emester
January 15th 2014


4229 Comments

Album Rating: 3.0

pretty good. vocals pretty much bogs the thing down a bit.

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mindleviticus
January 15th 2014


8326 Comments


this sounds great

GwyntTywyll
February 17th 2014


24 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

This is a fantastic slab of tech/prog death with some of the most insane vocals you'll hear. Excellent album. Hope these guys make more music.



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