Containing current and ex-members of bands such as Code, Macabre Omen, and Lvcifyre, Earthbound is a 47-minute atmospheric black metal album that may not be quite what you were expecting. Continue reading “Tome of the Unreplenished – Earthbound (Review)”
It seems that Code have undergone somewhat of a transformation since 2013’s Augur Nox; gone is the Avant-Garde Black Metal, instead being replaced with Progressive Post-Rock.
Their new incarnation is akin to a cross between Red Sparowes, Anathema, Autumnblaze, Green Carnation and Radiohead to my ears. It’s a change in style that seems to suit the band as it sounds like a natural fit.
The music is stripped back but expressive and emotive nonetheless. The relatively short songs contain a lot of content in a short space of time; one would almost expect music of this nature to be double the length but most of the tracks here are about 3-4 minutes in duration.
The vocals are similar in style to their past versions, albeit less extravagant and with greater fragility. His voice has an internal power to it though that again reminds of the singers of Anathema and Autumnblaze.
The songs seem to tell a story and pull the listener into their world. The soundscapes Code create are involving and forbidding; they’ve managed to create a sense of carnival-esque awe and wonder for the listener to explore through Post-Rock textures and Progressive Rock workouts.
I applaud the band for their willingness to update their sound, and although I will miss their past style they’ve amply proven to me with Mut that they continue to create rich and engaging music.
A good musical starting point of reference would be bands such as Arcturus, Dødheimsgard and Enslaved, as well as aspects of Opeth or Borknagar. This is only a starting point however, as Code definitely have their own sound as well as masses of talent and songwriting skills.
Gleaming, obsidian riffs crash against each other in a sea of percussive paranoia and nightmare orchestration. It’s as if someone has been having fantastical dreams about a dark future and they have sprung fully-shaped into life in the form of this album.
The vocals criss-cross all over the complex music and create the impression of power, synergy and importance. Very impressive and brilliantly realised.
There is so much colour and depth to these songs that most bands sound one-dimensional by comparison. Multi-layered vocals take centre-point while the music is no slouch either, effortlessly conjuring up the impressions and feelings that these songsmiths wish you to experience as you travel with them on this wild journey.
This truly is an exceptional and individual release; the kind of album that keeps Metal alive and kicking; stops it from becoming stale and stagnant.
Favourite Track: Garden Chancery. Vocal harmonies to die for. But really I could pick almost any song – Augur Nox is that strong.
This is for all fans of Metal, or just for those with heavier Progressive proclivities. If there’s only one album you get in the near future then make sure it’s this.