The band’s lineup features Wandering Mind (lead guitars, vocals), the guitar maestro and vocalist Phil Tougas A.K.A Hyperborean Apparition, The Great Righteous Destroyer (bass guitar), and Charlie Koryn (drums). VoidCeremony managed to create a very complex and remarkable album. Thanks to virtuoso guitarist Phil Tougas and the technical skills of drummer Charlie Koryn the songwriting became more twisted and complex, reminiscent of the old-school traits of bands like Atheist, Cynic and Death.
There is definitely no question about the four individuals possessing an intricate writing style that is defined as crafty and organic. The album’s opener ‘Threads of Unknowing (The Paradigm of Linearity)’ showcases a refined skills set by the high standards for which the band became known. VoidCeremony gives an insight into how to orchestrate the riffs into a catchier sound to classic death metal. Despite the explosive blast beats each element from the towering guitar solos and the bass guitar contributes to the sonic palette.
In the following track ‘Writhing in the Facade of Time’ the heavy pounding of the bass guitar adds a unique technique with guitarists Wandering Mind and Hyperborean Apparition showing great capabilities in how to use their progressive and technical skills. The riffing patterns often have a harmonic feel and simultaneously they sound bold and deliver a twisted labyrinth of high-quality death metal riffs. One of the remarks is how the guitars swerve through the progressive spectrum of death metal. Although nothing feels too forced or quirky, the guitar riffs are very much influenced by jazz music.
The fretless bass guitar, on the other hand, is really great at adding textures. However, the guitar solos on the third track ‘Abyssic Knowledge Bequeathed’ are just mind-boggling. The melodies are very much jazzy, yet the guitars maintain the heaviness. While this track is an example of how VoidCeremony fuses various styles, the drums are often played very fast. At the same, the riffs are a crafty blend of technical and progressive death metal and truly stand out for delivering memorable and remarkable solos, hence offering plenty of variety of slow, mid-paced and rapid riffs. The fretless bass guitar is constantly changing and omnipresent throughout the album, with the guitars venturing into odd and progressive territory.
Guitarist Wandering Mind leads the way of the songs through fast tempos. His methods are crafty and constantly shift from the slow pacing with the drums being the backbone to the twisted disharmonious orchestra. ‘Entropic Reflections Continuum’ is one of the songs which focuses on bizarre guitar techniques and also maintains the old-school brutal style of death metal. Drummer Charlie Koryn employs tons of technical drum fills and patterns while the guitar solos are uniquely VoidCeremony, whose defining traits are aptly emphasized by the virtuoso skills.
Aside from the rapid drumming, the smooth songwriting allows the bass guitar to swagger, and the quartet combines the old-school death metal rawness in such an intensive and visceral manner. While every song here matters, it’s hard to point out any tracks on the album, ‘Threads of Unknowing’ is achieved through an organic level of groove and intricacy that makes it easily one of the best albums of this year. Perhaps the only element that feels less emphasized is the abrasiveness and unhinged brutality, albeit the sophomore fully displays the technical and raw brutality of death metal.
The final track ‘Forlorn Portrait: Ruins of an Ageless Slumber’ perfectly encapsulates bizarre rhythms, tons of jazz influences and technical twists. Proggy guitar riffs and blast beats dominate the tempos. There are also some classy lead guitar passages thrown into the mix. The music shifts from the progressive territory to a technical style and the drums are incredibly technical and energetic, thrusting the overall heaviness, although there are still plenty of fast-paced movements when the drums shift to blast beats. VoidCeremony has a unique way to create a sound that is highly enjoyable especially when the mid-pacing shifts to a slightly chaotic pace that is quite noticeable. The guitar solo segments are very derivative of Atheist’s classic albums like ‘Unquestionable Presence’.
- Music / Songwriting 9/10
- Vocals / Lyrics 9/10
- Mix / Production 10/10
- Artwork & Packaging 9/10
- Originality 9/10
As a quartet VoidCeremony has evolved into a musical institution showcasing technical prowess and intricate songwriting concepts. Therefore, the sophomore ‘Threads of Unknowing’ is highly recommended for fans of technical death metal.
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