Review Summary: A solid slab of metal with riffs as thick as your wrists.
I start this review by eating humble pie. In my review for Raw, their 2012 demo, I concluded that they would likely fade into complete obscurity and never make a name for themselves - indeed, they were unlikely to make any more music. After being informed by one of the band members of the circumstances of recording that they were under, and more importantly that it had earned them some recognition, my prediction was somewhat ill-founded. Only a week later they were to release Welter Through The Ashes, their first full length, and although some of the problems of the demo remain, it is a far improved offering from the German 'hardcore-sludge' outfit.
For those that have listened to Raw and are aware of the issues the demo had, the first minute or so of Tresor is not a promising start; a fuzzy hardcore guitar riff repeating over a consistent drumbeat and vocalist Mo Posch's enraged yelling seems all too painfully familiar. Thankfully, before things get too comfortable and the brain can wander off, it seems that they can finally use the arsenal of riffs which it was obvious that they had - something which continues over the entire running length of the album. Although none are technical, mind bending pieces, the grasp of varying note lengths and dynamics means that they are able to sustain the impact created for a long period of time - this, coupled with the clearer production, means that it doesn't feel so much like a wall of noise and each track has slightly more of it's own character.
The vocals on here are primarily that of a hardcore influenced mid-ranged roar - not particularly varied in it's delivery, but strong throughout and spat out with enough conviction to be effective in conjunction with the music. The weakest sections come when cleaner vocals are used; unavoidable being a German group with English lyrics, but the accent is noticeably strong which although makes it noticeable, the effect is perhaps not the one wanted (presumably to add some effective variety to the coarser vocals). On the subject of the lyrics, they continue to not be great works of literature, but by no means unfitting of the music played.
In the rhythm section, the bass is particularly prominent, and although not particularly flashy actually puts forward some unexpected chord progressions across the album, giving many songs a slightly sinister feeling to them. Similarly, the drums are now no longer the onerous affair that they were in the demo, but now, although still consistent and occasionally venturing into stale grounds, offer a much more dynamic experience to the listener, particularly in faster sections.
To conclude, Rodha's first full length definitely shows more promise than their initial effort. Some sections are still slightly bogged in too much repetition and some of the vocal performances are a bit disjointed, but it is a very enjoyable experience throughout, with heavy, angry riffs dotted all over the place and a showing improvement in songwriting meaning there may be greater things to come for this group.