Featuring seven long songs and clocking in at just under an hour in duration, this album contains a blend of thrash and death metal, alongside a good helping of melodic and progressive elements.
The songs take a surprising amount of influence from old-school thrash and death metal. Why surprising? I’m not really sure, but I think the combination of the album cover and song lengths for some reason led me to be believe that this would be a more modern, shiny affair. I’m glad it’s not, as this album is disarmingly authentic and honest in its love and performance of metal.
The album has a decent sound, mixing rich, organic heaviness, with a warm melodic allure that appeals to both my underground and more-polished sensibilities, further enhancing its old-school atmosphere.
I can hear some of Kreator‘s aggressive trash, while also being reminded of Death’s progressive soundscapes. You can hear other influences across the album, of course, (Metallica, Testament, etc.), but these are the ones that hit me the most. I’m pleased to say though that although these bands definitely cast long shadows, for the most part Carchosa is an album that manages to avoid getting lost in them too much.
The artist behind this band has a clear love of decent riffs and bright, powerful leads. These latter aspects of the music are infectiously melodic and carry a lot of emotive weight in them.
Across the usually lengthy songs can be heard various different ideas and creative flourishes. This might be an unexpected orchestral interlude, or some of the tasty wandering basslines that appear now and again, or some Opeth-esque progressively-tinged acoustic parts. With plenty of other examples spread out across the music, Carchosa has a lot to offer.
The vocals are unusual and not the standard kind of delivery you might expect to hear these days. I could probably once again reference Kreator and Death as obvious starting points for an idea of what the vocalist here sounds like, but he also has his own personality that shines through in his performance.
Definitely a recommended listen.