Crowpath are a Sweden technical hardcore band in the same vein as let’s say, The Dillinger Escape Plan. They are sadly one of the bands in the same scene that tries to hold a candle to DEP. The scene is usually over-populated by generic bands that show massive similarities (The Red Chord, Between the Buried and Me, PsyOpus, The End, Ed Gein) Crowpath seem to be the new band that’s fallen into this category. They released their debut in 2003 called Red on Chrome and the band was starting to gain attention outside their small Swedish fan base.
The music is uncharacteristic because of the normal Swedish scene. They must feel out of place, being the odd one in the community. They use coarse guitar licks and crazy out of this world drumming. The raging development and constant time changes have a big sign up above them saying “math-core influence” yet I still wonder why I like the style they have. The music is a bit simpler in some cases though while the tech metal craze is based on intelligence in their music. Crowpath are more a brutal assault on everything the new trend stands for. The music is not up-beat as it has a dark atmosphere of dread evil. They just blow everything back into your faces which is obvious as they gather heavy metal influences.
My best description would be certainly vague as they are one of these bands that have a hard distinct sound. I can just say technical metal and you can already get a good hearing of what their sound holds but there is a lot going on in this album that it is a whole lot more. My second description is crazy, mad and random metal
as it is fast and heavy and can never stay in the same spot once. Quite ironically, it sometimes has a grind sound but in some parts the tempo just drops suddenly and starts to sound like a happier version of Sunn O))). If anyone is looking for an album to access easily then don’t look here. Don’t expect any melody or killer guitar “riffs” as they are zilch here.
The band is really heavy and the music is like a mallet to your head. The band is good musicians as well. The guitarist must have bleeding fingers since he needs to keep up with the chaos on his fret board but not as much as the drummer who basically keeps the song going. He is super fast and he has a harder job to do than anyone else since if he fails, the whole band fails. The songs rely on the drums a lot (like Circle Takes the Square) and it just gives him a moment to shine. There is only one problem though and that is that the snare has a horrible thin sound. It would be better if we were treated to a big deep sound. The vocals are intense, no melody or anything. It is just straight from the throat grunts and screams. He basically gives the music its metal edge. The bass is there but it just seems to add more things to the chaos which is basically what most metal bassists do anyway.
There are only 3 tracks over the 3 minute mark which tells you that all the songs are short bursts of energy that doesn’t drag on but before you know it the song is over before you really get into it. Weird though is that there is a 5:29 song and a 7:08 song which drags on so much that I skip it when the interesting part is over. These songs are what have a doom metal sound to them (which is why they are so long I guess) but it feels like they are what you call “fillers”. I’m not using this in the usual term but the songs are hectic for about 3 minutes and then they slowly start to drag and since the whole album is 33:53, I assume that it is only to simply fill the album up. I also think that the songs sound the same. I’m sitting here listening to the album right now and I still can’t tell the difference between the songs unless you notice every changes and every note which I know you probably don’t.
On to the songs however and the album’s opener “Candles and Kerosene” is what starts the madness and clocking in at 2:10. It is just short bursts of energy with the minor guitar parts, the crazy blast beats and the crazy deep vocals. It can be a great head-banging song but it still ends too soon. I want more and more but then it falls short but that’s probably because the grind influence it shows. Next track on is probably the one I’m digging right now. “The Will to Burn” doesn’t slow down from the last track. It starts off a key lower but the vocals suddenly drift away from the traditional low as hell screams and into a high understandable screech. It has a cool lick in it which could be in any grindcore song but sadly it suffers from the doom metal reference I talked about earlier. The madness stops at 2:00 and it just drags and goes along slowly until it ends at 3:15.
This album isn’t perfect. The songs sound the same and they aren’t the most original band in the world. Their game is basically speed and brutality and that suddenly gives them an excuse to keep on being like their rivals. The technicality is good and dandy but song writing is obviously not their strong point
The Will to Burn