ALBUM: Fleshgod Apocalypse – “Labyrinth”
LABEL: Nuclear Blast
GENRE: Technical/Symphonic Death Metal
RATING: 7.5 / 10
Have you ever tried to swallow a brick without chewing and tried to shit it out again? Well, here’s your chance.
Fleshgod Apocalypse was a new name for me and I approached this album with an open mind and, well, it kind of kicked my ass. I put the CD in my car stereo, drove off and… all of a sudden, I was already at track 3?
Why, you ask? Well, I will tell you in the concept of a recipe:
- Take a handful of Technical Death Metal
- Add an over enthusiastic keyboardist and let him go bananas with orchestral score
- Blend in some Neoclassical guitars
- Sprinkle with some female opera vocals
- Serve with shitloads of blast beating drums
This album is so layered that you need to spin it several times, just to get what they’re trying to achive. It’s a thick, fucking brick of a soundscape that will break your teeth. Yngwie Malmsteen once phrased it “How can less be more? More is more!” (or something similar), and Fleshgod Apocalypse has definitely taken this to the next level, with this dynamically challenged release.
I find it somewhat sad that underneath the layers of blast beats and guitar shredding, you can almost hear the incredible work of the orchestral score, and I feel for the poor guy who spent, the devil knows how many hours, creating it, only to let the producer drown it.
“Hey, let’s twist this compression ratio to the max and see what happens?”
You have to understand that this album is in no way a bad album, but in my ears it is way too much of the good stuff and no real chance to breathe. I would give it an A for effort, a B for execution and a D for dynamics, but here at Deathdomain.com, we have a different system of rating music.
9.0 for effort, 8.0 for execution and 5.5 for dynamics equals an average of 7.5 and that fits pretty well with my thoughts on “Labyrinth”. It’s a good album, very well played and the bands competence, intentions and aims are admirable, but the product does not live up to it.
I would have liked to recommend a few tracks, but found it too hard to pick one or two that stood out. Maybe if I had brought my stone chisel, I could have cut a piece of the brick and presented it to you.
Review by: GJ