Friday, February 3, 2017

Black Metal History Month - Heretoir : "the Circle"

Any one who thought black gaze was just a phase can now his this German band's ass as the have now been around for 11 years. The smooth clean vocals that come in on the verse have more a Swedish flair to them they remind me more of Katatonia or Opeth , than what I remember hearing from this band before. They do bring back the harsher growled vocals , but once again the song builds more like something Katatonia would do than black metal. After 11 years I am sure you are ready for some of the black metal trapping to fall away, just ask Darkthrone. "Inhale" finds things speeding up with very clean double bass. Things more much more calculated here. There is a more conventional placement to the harsh vocals that are punchier with a more metal-core like cadence to them. This doesn't mean they have gone total mall metal as there are still beautiful passages attached to this song, the bigger production makes them almost sound like something a progressive death metal band would do.

The clean vocals on "Golden Dust" work really well and sound more like what I remember to be their own voice. This isn't the heaviest song so far , but it might just be the most well written. There is a really nice flow to "My Dreams are Lights in the Sky" that is propelled by some really top notch drumming. Not sure if it justifies being an instrumental though. The best song that Between the Buried and me did not write is called " Exhale". The blast beats do show up. In you you were worried they might not. "Eclipse" finds them to continue to go down this modern progressive metal road though the ending of this song is more black metal than not. They tap into a much more organic Deafheaven like take on things with "Laniakea Dances", this is a better direction than some of the more metal core tinged things.

"Faded With the Gray" finds them slip forward back into the more progressive side, while it sounds good this style just doesn't resonate as strongly with me as the previous song did.The album closes with "the Circle" which must be a wink at the more A Perfect Circle like intro that eventually does build into actual metal. This is a weird album to review, the reasons many people might like it are there since it sounds more like a metal album is heavier, but I think the things I wanted from this band are rather toned down, namely the shoe-gazing side. I'll give this album a 9 and see how the changes wear on me.

This drops March 24th.

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