Xanthochroid
Incultus


3.5
great

Review

by Papa Gnocchi STAFF
January 2nd, 2013 | 20 replies


Release Date: 2011 | Tracklist

Review Summary: A short foray into depth, rivalled by the band’s own creativity; showing that there is some merit in doing things the right way.

Incultus is an enriching listen, full of dark, light shown between a contrast of major and minor chords combined with diligent song-writing that is only going to see this well-rehearsed act extend on their already proven prowess and take the metal world by storm. This five track EP highlights the beginning of Xanthochroid’s career all in the space of thirty-six minutes. It might need to be noted however that this isn’t simply the accessible cheese of a symphonic metal band. Xanthochroid displays some very distinct elements thrown together in a vibrant display of instrumental talent and intelligent song-writing. At first the sound of a ‘symphonic black metal band’ may put a few off but give this a go, allow the ’you’ to be taken in by this tumultuous tumble. Despite the genre mash-up (even more than usual) this isn’t a simple gimmick. There is a depth to the soundscapes found on Incultus that allows the listener to be fully immersed in this genre crossover without having cheese poured over their heads. The music can be folk-y at times with a use of flutes but mostly the record blends an array of key and acoustic instruments to blend the symphonic and black metal aesthetics together.

Sighting influences from the likes of Opeth, Moonsorrow, Wintersun, and Emperor listeners can expect that there will be a wide array of sounds here. Fortunately though it’s not as simple as saying that track such and such is an Opeth/Wintersun track; instead Xanthochroid have combined their influences to create a revitalising sound, pretty much of their own making. The usual black metal aesthetics of raspy vocals and blast beats punch through the listeners’ senses but in turn each heavy section is off-set by that of a clean piano trill or quiet acoustic guitar. That is, before the EP kicks off an up-beat section full of triplet riffs and ringing chords backed by some steady if not predictable bass and drum work. There is a slightly under-produced sound found in the mixing that hurts the overall outcome of the record (but very slightly as the rest of the record shines through with a lot of promise). At times this ‘static’ sound does improve on the album’s atmosphere but for the most part this short record could really use that ‘million dollar’ production, allowing for every instrumental component to shine through and take mass effect. Another note to be made about Incultus is the fact that the album feels like it’s leading into something on a contextual basis. Sure the lyricall themes presented here come full circle, but for all it’s worth somebody didn’t quite connect the start with the finish.

Overall, Xanthochroid’s Incultus promotes just how some genres can clash than come together in a stunningly vibrant way. The final track ‘The Last Relic of Axen (8 Bit)’ comes a little out of place as it’s techno stylings seem at odds with the rest of the EP; even when compared to the original track – it is sure to leave the listener scratching their heads for it is as much of a turn off as the rest of the album is innovative. It may just be an EP but with enough depth to be the beginnings of a very positive full-length, Xanthochroid pushes on boundaries already explored and makes something almost unique from it. The EP’s problems may be few and far between and minimal in nature but they are something to be worked out on another release. Keep in mind that this is the first offering from a new to the scene group, and expectations for what may come next can be justified. Xanthochroid show much in the way of promise and in turn are sure to build hype for themselves.



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user ratings (40)
4
excellent
other reviews of this album
Jackalos (5)
A cinematic black metal release with fantastic execution...



Comments:Add a Comment 
Nocte
Staff Reviewer
January 2nd 2013


14576 Comments

Album Rating: 2.5

Yep, worked my way back from Blessed He With Boils.



Nocte
Staff Reviewer
January 2nd 2013


14576 Comments

Album Rating: 2.5

Wow dude, that was quick. You heard this El Capitano?

Nocte
Staff Reviewer
January 3rd 2013


14576 Comments

Album Rating: 2.5

Thanks broCaps, this needs a couple moar rates tho, too bad it's just a sausage fest for two so fars.

Nocte
Staff Reviewer
January 3rd 2013


14576 Comments

Album Rating: 2.5

I like mine wrinkly, like a chorizo for example.

Nocte
Staff Reviewer
January 3rd 2013


14576 Comments

Album Rating: 2.5

Why is lunch so far away?

Nocte
Staff Reviewer
January 3rd 2013


14576 Comments

Album Rating: 2.5

If that's a fridge than yes. Sup Flutter?

Nocte
Staff Reviewer
January 3rd 2013


14576 Comments

Album Rating: 2.5

If you like this than you might like the Of Pots and Pans list I just put up.

Nocte
Staff Reviewer
January 3rd 2013


14576 Comments

Album Rating: 2.5

Eh close enough. I'll be back in a bits.

Nocte
Staff Reviewer
January 3rd 2013


14576 Comments

Album Rating: 2.5

needs more rates guys.

Nocte
Staff Reviewer
January 3rd 2013


14576 Comments

Album Rating: 2.5

Yes mate, that's theSpirit ; ]

MatthewEarl
January 5th 2013


4 Comments

Album Rating: 5.0

Incultus is underproduced and blessed he with boils is overproduced? God dammit lol

Nocte
Staff Reviewer
January 6th 2013


14576 Comments

Album Rating: 2.5

Lol wat?

Dodecahedron
January 28th 2013


970 Comments

Album Rating: 4.5

I like this about as much as I like Blessed He With Boils. Extremely impressive stuff considering it's the first thing the band has ever created.

Nocte
Staff Reviewer
January 28th 2013


14576 Comments

Album Rating: 2.5

Hey man, you going through my reviews now lol? Not that i mind of course.

Dodecahedron
January 28th 2013


970 Comments

Album Rating: 4.5

It's a possibility

Nocte
Staff Reviewer
January 28th 2013


14576 Comments

Album Rating: 2.5

kk, all goods lol. Find anything you like?

Dodecahedron
January 28th 2013


970 Comments

Album Rating: 4.5

Found some cool looking stuff I haven't heard before that I'll probably be checking out.

Nocte
Staff Reviewer
January 28th 2013


14576 Comments

Album Rating: 2.5

Yeah i try to balance out the mainstream with the not so much

Dodecahedron
January 28th 2013


970 Comments

Album Rating: 4.5

Elysian Blaze is the main one I want to check out, love Funeral Doom and Black Metal so I should probably love that. (I'll also admit that the first thing that usually draws me to check a band out that I haven't heard before is the album art, and I loved the album art on Blood Geometry)

Nocte
Staff Reviewer
January 28th 2013


14576 Comments

Album Rating: 2.5

Do I have some rec's for you : ]



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