Reviewed: June, 2018
Released: 2018, Independent
Reviewer: Andrew Cook
Technically this is the sophomore release by our good friends here at Apocrophex; I say technically because they released an EP first, but as far as LP’s go I suppose it is true. Labelled primarily back in the day as Tech Death, and after being highly lauded for their first album “Suspended From The Cosmic Altaar”, the expectation levels of fans where no doubt incredibly high.
Well, I hate to be the bearer of bad news, but on this album I don’t think I could in good conscience strictly label them as just Tech Death anymore, as they have decided to take a far darker and may I say less diddly diddly flat out approach to things. Yes it still contains moments of sheer guitar wailing madness and melting drumsticks, but the boys seem to have come at this one with much more sinister intent.
So what has changed? Well Pete’s vocals still range from the demonic to the sounds of a man that has obviously gone insane, and they still exhibit all the technical proficiency from the last album, but from opener “Where Temples Are Older Than Trees” you know that they are hell bent on making a FAR heavier statement. Those riffs man, those riffs. The tone on this album is just simply crushing. It’s like they have traded in their trusty one humped Camel for one with two humps, if you get my meaning…
Alongside the sheer brutality come some beautiful little fleeting acoustic moments, but for the purist, rest assure they do not overly dominate; nay, it is not like they have gone completely mental, just mental – er, to put it in the only way I can. Some moments remind me in parts of early Gojira also, but when the whole thing kicks back in to gear it is the tone and the vocals that bind this all together into a giant fucking machine of awesome that truly wants to kick your sorry arse.
The tone is what gets me the most: as stated, it’s brutal; some of these riffs would flay a man alive at five paces if given half a chance, and having Kevin Paradis of Svart Crown and Sutra fame on board has only helped to make this a far more organic experience if anything. Yes, it is still Apocrophex, but a beefier one, an angrier one, one that has decided to punish you in ways you were unaware of. I for one have thoroughly enjoyed this punishment.
As always, people want standout tracks, so start at the beginning, head over to track three “Thwarting Dogma” for a nice kick in the teeth that is all about aggro for the most part, then jump to “Pareidolia” for another slapping of the highest order, mixed with vocals all over the place and drums to die for. The last two tracks “A Sentient Edifice” and “Neglected Megalith” serve well to prove my point: not only are they as powerful as all fuck, but they exhibit the tone and direction of which I have been speaking. This is a far more focused and dare I say dangerous Apocrophex.
Approach with caution folks, this is not one for the faint of heart. Superb, absolutely superb.
1. Where Temples Are Older Than Trees
2. Implanted Genesis
3. Thwarting Dogma
4. The Oracle Room
5. Sovereign Symbol
7. A Sentient Edifice
8. Neglected Megalith
Justin Buell – All instruments/Mixing
Pete Colucci – All Vocals/Lyrics
Kevin Paradis – Drums (Session)