AGGREGATED ASSAULT!

Dragonforce

3.9
Free Metal E-Mail









New Users Sign Up

Connect. Befriend. Follow.

Share |



Other swag here
metal rules swag



Torchbearer
Yersinia Pestis
August 2004
Released: 2004, Metal Blade
Rating: 3.0/5
Reviewer: Lord of the Wasteland

Torchbearer are a supergroup of sorts, gathering members from bands such as Unmoored, Incapacity, Solar Dawn, Setherial, Chaosdaemon and Satariel (none of which I have heard of) to collaborate on their first CD, YERSINIA PESTIS. Produced by Carnal Forge vocalist Jonas Kjellgren at his Black Lounge Studio, the band’s music is blackened thrash/death, not unlike that of Naglfar. YERSINIA PESTIS (the bacteria which caused the bubonic plague, or “Black Death,” in Medieval Europe and killed one-third of the population) is blessed with excellent production and the musicians clearly bring a lot to talent to the table. Unfortunately, the songs they have created are not particularly interesting. They aren’t bad, but there really isn’t much to hold your attention. At only 36 minutes, the CD seems like it’s over as soon as it began and despite five listening sessions, I still find it hard to really focus on anything. The cover, done by vocalist Par Johansson is quite catching, though!



Strangely, all the guitar solos on the record were done by a ghost musician, Unmoored’s Thomas Johansson. This band employss TWO full-time guitarists and yet they need to enlist a THIRD to do the solos?!? That aside, the guitars and drums are real standouts here. Lightning fast riffs are played and executed with fluid precision, while the drums are rife with blast beats. Par Johansson’s vocals are not the typical guttural death growl, either. He has more of a mid-range roar and even dips into a black metal shriek at times.



The songs all follow a theme of a village called Kaffa that has been hit by the plague. “Sown Are The Seeds of Death” and “Dead Children, Black Rats” are the best of the bunch with their tight riffs and pummeling drums. “Bearer of The Torch” and “Far Advanced Closure” have great riffs and the fast-fingered intro to “Shorespread God” is very impressive.



Without disparaging Torchbearer too much, I was hoping for something, well, super from this supergroup! The songs are not bad by any means and the musicianship is exemplary, but there just isn’t much to grab and hold my interest. Hopefully the continuing story of the Black Death (or whatever subject they choose) on their next record will strike me better because there is definitely something bubbling beneath the surface of this band waiting to explode.



KILLER KUTS: “Sown Are The Seeds of Death,” “Dead Children, Black Rats,” “Bearer of The Torch”
Track Listing

1. Assail The Creation
2. Sown Are The Seeds of Death
3. Dead Children, Black Rats
4. Faith Bled Dry
5. Bearer of The Torch
6. Pain Cometh
7. Far Advanced Closure
8. Thus Came Dying Unto Kaff
9. Shorespread God
10. Failure’s Dawn

Lineup

Par Johansson—Vocals
Goran Johansson—Guitar
Christian Alvestam—Guitar
Mikael Degerman—Bass
Henrik Schonstrom—Drums

Other reviews

» Yersinia Pestis
by JP

» Yersinia Pestis
by Lord of the Wasteland

» Yersinia Pestis
by Gabriel C. Zolman


Next review: » Torchbearer - Yersinia Pestis
Previous review: » Torchbearer - Yersinia Pestis

Torchbearer
Yersinia Pestis
February 2005
Released: 2004, Metal Blade Records
Rating: 4.0/5
Reviewer: Gabriel C. Zolman

Licensed from Cold Records, this recent Metal Blade act features members of Solar Dawn, Satariel, Setherial, and Unmoored…not a bad start. Musically speaking, it is a solid, albeit standard-issue, black/death album, with a handful of surprises midway through the disc.

Vocally, there is a nice sense of diversity, without being over-zealous—no trendy melodic crooning, no quacking noises, and no forced-sounding grunts. From blackened screeches to melodic-death snarls and dry-heaving death metal growls, vocalist Par Johansson, of Satariel fame, sounds like he means business, and that business appears to be quite sinister.

Riff-wise, this veers from traditional death metal riffing to more Swedish-flavored fare, although many of the leads and runs sound more Finnish that anything (i.e. Kalmah, Insomnium, etc.). Overall, from a stylistic standpoint, this favors more of a Dissection-styled black/death hybrid not really seen much since bands like Noctes and Sacramentum left the scene. A good reference point would be Prophanity (remember them?) or early Catamenia. There is some experimentation here—the stop-start breaks in “Pest Cometh” is not commonly heard in this style, at least not as well integrated as it is here. The chaotic fret-work on “Far Advance Closure” has almost a classic feel to it, like something Dark Angel might have pulled out of their hat. The most notable thing (guitar-wise) the band manages, however, is its anthemic leads and midsections—the afore-mentioned “Far Advance Closure,” as well as “Bearer Of The Torch” and “Dead Children, Black Rats”—all three of which could compete as the album’s highlight(s).

As a debut this is outstanding; as a genre release, it is a competent, though unsurprising, black/death opus from an extremely promising young band.
Track Listing

1. Assail The Creation
2. Sown Are The Seeds of Death
3. Dead Children, Black Rats
4. Faith Bled Dry
5. Bearer of The Torch
6. Pest Cometh
7. Far Advanced Closure
8. Thus Came dying Unto Kaffa
9. Shorespread God
10. Failures Dawn

Lineup

Par Johansson-vocals
Christian Alvestam-guitar
G. Johansson-guitar
Mikael Degerman-bass
Henrik Schonstrom-drums

Other reviews

» Yersinia Pestis
by JP

» Yersinia Pestis
by Lord of the Wasteland

» Yersinia Pestis
by Gabriel C. Zolman


Next review: » Torchia - oNe
Previous review: » Torchbearer - Yersinia Pestis





Home | About Metal-Rules.com | Staff | Advertise With Us | Staff Openings | Donations

Content is © 2009-2012 Metal-Rules.com. All Rights Reserved.
Graphics by Hammerblaze studio.