Manes – Slow Motion Death Sequence (Review)

ManesManes are a Norwegian avant-garde rock band, and this is their fifth album.

New Manes is always a pleasure to hear. This is the band’s first material since 2014’s Be All End All, and once again they show why they are so highly regarded.

Featuring a compelling mix of progressive, electronic, avant-garde, trip-hop, and experimental rock, this album is a deeply rich and emotive collection of songs. Each individual track feels perfectly crafted from expensive materials to the highest exacting standards.

With guest vocals from the singers of Mourning Sun and Lethe, (among others), the album delivers up a diverse range of experiences for the listener to enjoy. Travelling down many different paths across the course of the album’s 46 minutes, Manes always offer something noteworthy and creative for the discerning musical connoisseur to encounter on their journey through the songs.

This album is filled to the brim with emotive darkness and has a seductive quality to it that’s quite disarming. Although not metal in any traditional sense, the album still benefits from Manes’ black metal past in the aforementioned darkness that sits at the heart of the music. It may have a certain Gothic sensibility, but this comes from a very blackened place, rather than anything more plastic or inauthentic. This music is very honest in this regard, taking elements from whatever it wants to create some truly affecting music.

Rich in sound, rich in songwriting, rich in delivery, rich in feeling, rich in performances…I keep coming back to the word rich when thinking of this album. Slow Motion Death Sequence really is rich in all of the best ways. The songs are real jewels, and manage to achieve that rarest of syntheses between style and substance. Yep, this album has both bases firmly covered.

This is an album to explore over time, obsessing over its multifaceted and expressive music until you feel like you know it inside and out, only to discover that there’s even more just underneath the surface, so you begin the process all over again.


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