Ever since first being exposed to The Negative Bias’s cosmic black metal on their split with Golden Dawn, I’ve been hungry for some more material from this band. As such, the 22 minutes on offer on Tapeworm Pyramids is very well-received.
There are three tracks on this release. Opener Tapeworm Pyramids is a multitextured piece, showcasing the rich tapestry of emotive territories that The Negative Bias operate in, from soft acclimatisation to potent majestic intensity. The music travels far and wide across black metal’s tumultuous landscape, inserting a number of different ideas from a number of different substyles; old-school atmospheric black metal is at the heart of this piece, but the more modern incarnations of melodic, avant-garde, and post-black metal are present too. There are lots of highlights here, but I especially like the way the epic chants are used.
The Alpha, the Omega/Nebulatorian Machines is a track of two parts. The first is a broiling wave of melodic fury, while the second is an ambient piece. Of the former; the song is melodically and atmospherically resonant, and really doubles down on the second wave feel. It strongly reminds me of listening to this sort of black metal in the 90s. That The Negative Bias have captured this feeling so powerfully is quite striking. Concerning the latter, the ambient part; this is appended to the main song, acting as a breather between what came previously, and what comes next.
The last song – Anywhere out of the World – is a Dead Can Dance cover. I haven’t heard the original, but as presented here, the track is an atmospheric Gothic metal feast that reveals another side to the band’s talents. It’s an emotive, mostly cleanly sung song that’s very effective in its delivery.
All in all Tapeworm Pyramids is a strong new EP from The Negative Bias, and bodes very well for their next album.