Review Summary: Cosomogenesis is looked upon as one of the best metal albums of 2009 around these parts, could Obscura’s overlooked album ever come close to the greatness of their latest outing?4 of 5 thought this review was well written
So how could they possibly sound good without the Ex-Necrophagist members and the fretless bass that made them technical death metal gods in the year of 2009? The answer to that would be very carefully and precise, you will not hear one sloppy or rushed riff come out of your in your 45 minute journey with Obscura. Complete with razor sharp guitar work and epic solos this could be look upon as a wet dream for any fan of technical death metal. First the tapping that is done on this record is phenomenal, honestly as a guitarist I couldn’t even dream of doing half of the stuff that is done on this album.
The band takes a lot of influence from the free form jazz genre, which is always a superb breath of fresh air when done correctly. As for the guitar tone the knob is definitely set at epic, the majority of the technicality is brought on in a very melodic way, which meshes very well with the Chuck Schuldiner style vocals. The riffs are very memorable, and remain very all over the place in a tasteful way.
The vocals are very raspy screams/yells. The vocalist is audible most of the album which for me in a way is burdensome, I feel this album would’ve have been better off left an instrumental. Not to say the vocalist is bad he just isn’t exactly up to par with the amazing instrumentation.
The album has its progressive moments for example in the song “Hymn to a Nocturnal Visitor” mid song there is a cello solo, which came very unexpectedly. The installation of the cello in this song gives it a somewhat depressing feel. “Retribution” was in many ways an experimental effort. The only song that doesn’t really stick out is the cover of Death’s “Lack of Comprehension”, most likely because this has been done before, and with this song they kind of stick to the way Death formulated the song. Due to the fact that the vocalists for Death and Obscura sound fairly alike the original and their remade version sound almost exactly the same, which isn’t a bad thing just in some ways it makes it seem as though it’s filler.
Aside from the cover song nothing on the record seems even relatively like filler. All the riffs are inventive, the rhythm section is extremely memorable, and the drummer plays his part to the fullest. Though the band does bring the melody the majority of “Retribution” they also come across as pretty brutal, essentially I would refer to this album as a no holds barred tech death album, due to the fact that they are not afraid to experiment as much as they please. “Exit Life” has one of the most infectious riffs on the album; the main riff from that song can get stuck in your head for hours. The only thing the album could’ve had more of is those delicious solos, but hell that probably a stupid complaint because you could just make a mix cd of all of Obscura’s solos and I would just sit and jizz for sixty minutes straight.
So I’m going to just get to the point and answer everyone’s question. Is this better than their 2009 beast of an album Cosmogenesis? No it most certainly is not but it definitely does in fact come very close to the progressive godlike album that was their latest outing. So overall I give this a solid 4 out of 5, the album has very minor flaws but the biggest problem I had was the very unnecessary cover song, I would of much rather have had another original song rather than a very detailed replica of one of my favorite Death songs. Check this out if you like amazing music.