Sceptre – Age of Calamity (Review)

SceptreAge of Calamity is the second album from India’s Sceptre. It’s a concept album about societal attitudes towards women delivered via the medium of a harsh brand of Thrash Metal.

By Jove there are some good riffs on this album! Wrath of God is a perfect example. Storming and crushing. The entire album is full of quality songs though, so it’s no surprise.

The vocals are raw and unadulterated, ranging from grunts to shouting to dirty-cleans. The singer is clearly passionate about the subject matter and nearly lets his enthusiasm get the best of him on occasion, but not in a bad way; this merely increases the authenticity of the feelings involved.

The music is clearly Thrash Metal, but with more of a modern tinge to the sound that might have some people surprised. This is the real deal though, with serrated riffs flying left, right and centre and high velocity drums leading the charge the entire way.

Sceptre may not be the most prolific band in the world but they have been around long enough to know their stuff, and this album is testament to that.

Quality Thrash from a quality band.

Coshish – Firdous (Review)

CoshishCoshish are from India and play Progressive Rock that is very well put together and realised.

Lighter than most of the bands reviewed on this site; this is for moments of introspection and contemplation, and fans of Tool, Porcupine Tree, (new) Opeth and (elements of) Orphaned Land should lap this up.

Firdous is an involved concept album documenting a young man’s journey towards attaining Mukti, (liberation or release), and the lyrics are entirely in Hindi. This story spills out into the detailed artwork and even the tracklisting, where the optimal order of the tracks is a puzzle to solve using clues from the complete digipak artwork. A lot of thought has gone into this release.

None of which would matter a damn if the music didn’t meet these high standards, but it so obviously does from the first track onwards. Coshish create a rich tapestry of sound and impression via expansive Progressive Rock.

The songs are very well crafted and full of an array of instrumentation and harmonic flourishes. The content of the compositions is warm and textured, and the tracks uplift and hearten without sounding trite.

The vocals are highly melodic and accomplished, providing the icing on the proverbial cake throughout this delicious album.

As Progressive Rock goes this is an exquisite release brimming with delicacies to satisfy even the most jaded palette. If this is to your taste then there is a feast to be had with Firdous. Eat up.