Review Summary: Neptune's winds in aural form.
There once was a very wise man in the land of yore that went by the name of ffs and he uttered the following: "Everyone who isn't stupid as hell knows Finnish death metal is the best death metal." Such insightful and endearing words have never been spoken before in the English language or any tongues of men. As many f*cking stupid people don't seem to comprehend, thinking that it "all sounds the same", one of the key qualities of a thriving death metal scene is variety. The Finnish death metal scene, both past and present, is chock full of this quality. With everything from Rippikoulu's devastating, subwoofer-shattering Musta Seremonia
and Funebre's shredded rendering in Children of the Scorn
to Demilich's iconic, schizophrenic and demented Nespithe
and from Convulse's darkened pummeling in a World Without God
to Depravity's liquid nitrogen-infused Silence of the Centuries
. Finnish death metal is a boiling witch's brew of sonic escapades and crushing density that offers no remorse in its bludgeoning. However, emerging out of the hills that have eyes, there is one album that ties all of these irreverent sounds together perhaps better than any other. That restless beast is the haunting, unhallowed masterpiece that is Adramelech's Psychostasia
Quite simply, Psychostasia
is a record that flows so well that it is nearly impossible to turn it off midway through. The band's disturbed and unconventional sense of melody through their technically-proficient fretboard flogging and tremolo dancing is put on wonderful display in the opening track, "Heroes In Godly Blaze" and continues smashing away throughout the album. Despite being unconventional nearly to the degree of Demilich's spastic conjuring, these Spanish Flu-level infectious riffs induce instant replay value and pump a fiercely beating heart into the core of Adramelech's arsenal of artillery. In addition, ghostly ambience is generated through passages such as the clean intro/outro combo to album highlight, "The Book of the Worm", and enhances the eerie overtone that envelops the tracks. The drumming, highlighted by a flourishing production job providing a thick and organic base, is also electric with highly precise blast beats, double bass and brash fills at every turn cascading like waterfalls and tossing or turning like class five rapids. The twisted, crashing rhythms, combined with Jarkko Rantenan's whispered grunt in "Mythic Descendent" evoke images of galaxies collapsing in on themselves and sucking worlds into eternal damnation.
Speaking of Rantenan, it would be negligent to discount the effect that his vocals have on this set of songs. The nihilistic quality of his ghoulish, snarled utterances and mythologically tinged lyric sheet is perfectly tuned to turn a spine into an icicle as the rest of the instrumentation promptly shatters it. If anyone has seen The Day After Tomorrow
when the super storm funnels that super-chilled air downward through its eye and proceeds to freeze any exposed surface on ground, that's the type of Arctic blast that Rantenan's voice embodies. This album is the sound of the gods unleashing their angry wrath on the planet, as massive avalanches come down from the highest mountain peaks and towering tsunamis rise from below, decimating everything in sight.
is a recording that conjures up many contradictions, being highly catchy, but also highly unorthodox and blazing along on a fiery trail while simultaneously freezing Satan's popsicles (they really are quite delicious). It is the type of album that you seclude yourself in a cabin deep in the woods during the winter time with no sunlight poking through and dive into its depths over and over again. Adramelech display such pronounced musicianship and songwriting ability here that they patently pussify many other death metal rehashes that spam repeated ideas like untreated water through the Ganges. Psychostasia
is an absolute essential in any death metal collection, it slays for f*cking days™.