Sound — 8
One of the most interesting technical/progressive death metal albums in a long time. Technical riffs with odd time signatures, tempo changes, seamless transitions from harsh and brutal to soft and melodic. Pretty much standard tech death, but extremeley well executed and innovative. The first thing that stands out, listening to this record, is the bass- while the guitars are pretty much death metal "chugga-chugga and arpeggios" the bass is constantly being shredded all across the fretboard (fretless btw). While in other bands this kind of bass playing tends to ruin the overall intensity and brutality of the sound, in this, the mix is very good and pleasing. Also the vocals (think Glen Benton of Deicide) blend in perfectly. There is also an array of guest vocalists on this album who also add interesting dynamics to the songs. The drums are mostly nothing special- blast beats and keeping up with the guitars.
Lyrics — 8
The lyrics (as much as I cauld anderstand through the intense growling) are also pretty much death metal- about individuality, freedom and stuff. The singer doesn't staund out with a big vocal range, bet the gueast singers and instrumental passages make up for it.
Overall Impression — 8
I guess this compares to a lot of progressive metal bands which are influenced by death. Also they probably are higly influenced by Death themselves. A very good overall sound, interesting dynamics, definately doesn't get boring at any moment. Haven't heard anything like this in a while. Songs to listen to- Aetheral and Brimstone Landscapes.