Ok, people. Today we have one for every taste. Do I hear “Metal”? You got it. In fact we have both The Night Watch and Algos. What about some post-rock? That’s in there too with the astonishing We Lost The Sea…and in case you were wondering, there’s also some alternative rock with Eyes Wide Shot. C’mon fellas, grab your favourite taste !
The Night Watch – Boundaries (Canada, 2016)
One single, long epic is what is needed by The Night Watch to penetrate and sweeten the hearts of the most hardcore metalheads.
Founded by both guitarist and violinist of Musk Ox and drummer Daniel Mollema this instrumental metal act delivers a brilliant yet eclectic evidence of champagne-taste (progressive) metal with medieval scents. Amongst the various noticeable things, one did hit me. For the first time in my life I heard a guitar player, who definitely reminds me of Mike Oldfield and his electrical arpeggios, phrasing and leads. I don’t know whether that came on purpose or not, but I liked it!
The disc is fascinating, deep and sounds like a lonesome night watching an infinite forlorn clearing, indeed, building up the atmospheres, as the darkness comes forth, into a goose bump finale. Chapeau.
Oh, my favourite track was Boundaries…eheheh
Eyes Wide Shot – Back From Hell (France, 2016)
This 4-piece French band offers a very modern sounding blend of alternative rock/metal, that reminds me of Bullet for My Valentine somehow. I hope they don’t share the same horny teenage girls fanbase, though.
Back From Hell is an energetic cocktail that has been neatly written and played to provide a true adrenaline rush, only one major pitfall should be pointed out: the drums sound definitely too fake and plastic-y. Have they gone too far with quantization?
We Lost The Sea – Departure Songs (Australia, 2015)
The first thing that came to my mind whilst playing Departure Songs is the amazing affinity this album shares with GYBE’s first works. And that could already be the winning sentence out of this micro-review.
Actually We Lost The Sea are a bit less cinematic in their composition tendencies, but way more engaging energy-wise.
A calm, relaxed and peaceful air emanates from that 5-piece post-rock little opus. That’s something different again from their Canadian counterpart, still it’s something hauntingly and blissfully beautiful. This is the perfect soundtrack for a road-trip riding towards the setting sun.
Algos – Amongst Monolith (The Netherlands, 2016)
I’ve been following Mr.Algos for few years now and I must admit that, in my humble opinion, the Dutch mastermind hasn’t been able to par his 2014 acoustic release Fragmented yet.
That being said, Amongst Monoliths appears as a giant leap forward from his previous The Death of Seasons album for several aspects, that span from composition to playing. Albeit the production and most of the all programmed drums still suffer from a handful of minor flaws. The exciting formula of doom tuned melodic death metal can easily let you forget about those flaws, though.
An interesting, as well as brilliant addition to Algos new album are the black metal-inspired high pitched screams (which are more tight than ever before) and other solutions clearly derived from the above mentioned sub-genre. But when it comes to haunting, remarkable and badass melodies Algos is the man: try Pale Monolith or Blessed With Weakness.