Review Summary: Better than Manor of Infinite Forms. Better than most modern death metal bands.
Tomb Mold affirmed themselves as a more than capable death metal outfit with their impressive sophomore effort, Manor of Infinite Forms, released in 2017. Their less than unique, yet solid and polished mix of OSDM and grind is more than amicable and the band can definitely hold their own in the riff department. But what of their much anticipated third release?
Well, put simply, Planetary Clairvoyance is both a continuation and a step up from previous works. Everything here is of a high standard, from the more polished and heavier production, to the inclusion of fresh elements such as progressive/clean sections which help to embellish the record and give it a more interesting and unique sound. Beg For Life is a rip-roaring ride of riffs and guttural vocals, beginning with a mid-tempo guitar riff before manifesting itself as one of the album highlights. The boys in Tomb Mold have indeed heightened their abilities in the department of groovy and headbangable riff writing, which is evident throughout the entirety of Planetary Clairvoyance. As the tempo quickens in Beg For Life, the listener is treated to a smorgasbord of well written OSDM flavour riffage, interspersed with technicality and pulled off with a succinct flair.
But most interesting of all is the clean section that comes out of nowhere in the album opener. The guttural vocals may not transcend into glorious clean vocals or soaring falsetto like some bands may have chosen to do but it is a nice, refreshing take to include in the track. The t/t is another highlight, featuring fantastic guitar work and some brilliant double bass pedal drum patterns to spice up the already superbly executed OSDM sound that the band so predominantly relies on for the core of their sound. Cerulean Salvation even hints at some melodic death metal influence here and there as well as incorporating some great lead work from the guitars. Album closer Heat Death is even better in that department, with a absolute scorcher of a solo.
As expected, the album never really deviates into unfamiliar territory or anything too fanciful or progressive. However, the strength of the songwriting on Planetary Clairvoyance is undoubtedly more than enough for death metal fans to warrant their much deserved attention. One of the best releases in death metal this year thus far.
Beg For Life