Despite the decent-sized discography of Profanity, this is my first encounter with them other than their 2014 EP Hatred Hell Within. The EP was enough to ensure that I checked out this album when it appeared, (although it also highlighted the unfortunate fact that I have missed an album between the two releases).
Anyway, let’s give Fragments of Solace a closer look. With a duration of 41 minutes it doesn’t outstay its welcome. The album cover strikes the right mood, and the production is solid and professional. All good so far.
Of the music, there’s much of note. Profanity’s brand of technical death metal is dense and complex. The band craft music that’s designed to be an impenetrable mess of ridiculous guitars, inhuman drums, and convoluted solos. Unexpected structuring, strange time changes, and all-over-the-shop songwriting choices make for tracks that are as incomprehensible as they are off-putting. But all this, of course, is entirely the point. Fragments of Solace isn’t for the uninitiated, and even though some of the above description might not sound to complimentary on the surface, it should nonetheless be taken in a complimentary way, as Profanity are damn good at what they do.
Old-school thrash metal influences get a nod here and there, providing some jagged riffs to the music, and throwing an anchor out into the whirlwind of technical mayhem the band create. Likewise, melodic tendencies surface out of Profanity’s maelstrom of extremity now and again; especially notable are some of the extremely melodic leads and solos, which are preformed very well. Hell, everything here is flawlessly performed, to be honest. There are even occasional moments of atmosphere in places, but for the most part, Fragments of Solace is unflinchingly technical and aggressively intricate.
To sum up, Fragments of Solace is a top quality technical death metal album, one for hardened fans of the style to lap up and enjoy. Don’t miss out on it.
Very highly recommended.