Saturday, June 27, 2015
Pale Chalice : "Negate the Infinite and Miraculous"
This album starts off rather deceptively, and fools you into thinking that it is going to be some kind of slower black metal that doesn't lean to much on blasting. The guitar is prettier than it is ugly sounds like this would be Deafheaven. There is something more distant and cold about their music than Deafheaven and from the opener they seem to be more aligned with metal. On the second song "Shaking Nerves and Vacuous Spaces" is more traditional black metal in some ways it reminds me of old Dimmu before they got so symphonic. There is a similar evilness to the rasp of the vocals. The drummer is on it. There is a wall of double bass moving the song until they break it down to where you can hear the bass creeping up onto the accents.
By the the time you are at the third song they have pretty much proven they can bring almost anything you need from black metal to the table, even a Goatwhore like groove. With "Fragile Bones Cradling Tallow" they slip a little and begin just relying on speed and blasties , which can only get even the best of bands so far , the drums take and spin on an interesting break, but it only catches my ear for a minute. "Weltering Depth of the Carrion Wave" that a Mutilation Rites like melodies buried in the depth of the wave of tremolo picking. Some odd melodies drip out of the maggots spewed out by the guitars who pretty much save the day at every turn as the vocals are mean enough buy prove to be a one trick pony in anguish.Some of that anguish borders on DsBm so I like that emoting. They start playing it too safe again on "Bent By Carapace Chain". The final two minutes slow down and throb on the evil for a bit.
The last song finds the band pulling it together and writing a song rather than a collection of varied blast beats. The guitars are somewhat clean creating a more sonic sound. Towards the end it drops down to uncover the bass tone. I'll round it up to a 7.5, because these guys do hit all the marks that make a black metal band, but what I need from a black metal band is someone capable of doing that and can pull it out as needed but doesn't color in the line and breaks the rules more than follows them , because if black metal is about freedom then why conform to a sound so slavishly.