Saturday, November 24, 2012

Review of "Songs of the Buried" by Dunderbeist

Buy this album

1. .:Y:.
2. Father serpent
3. Acheron
4. Enter exile
5. The hidden ones
6.  Songs of the buried
7.  Centuries
8.  Four of the seven
9.  Forcefed boar's head
10. Mongrel

Dunderbeist has been at it for 6 years with the same amount of releases together with extensive touring. The Norwegian six headed locomotive embarks on their sixth release, their second one outside of Norway that follows their first international effort this year, “Black Arts & Crooked Tails” , with an album of great depth and sharper edges.

“Songs of the buried” continues where "black arts.."  left off,  but this one is darker, heavier and more progressive, both musically and lyrically. Not all that end is buried. Death is a recurring theme on this album, with the end of something and the beginning of the new. And a focus on the transitional stages in life, those big events that make everything else become lucid and intangible. It is in the shadows of those big emotions that the test of man dwells.

The album was like the previous ones recorded in Dunderbeist's own pigsty studio in Hamar, Norway, mixed by guitarist Fredrik Ryberg.  The mastering by Alan Douches ( Mastodon, Converge, Kvelertak ++) really puts the final signature on the sound, and contributes to erecting "Songs of the Buried"  like a mighty beacon among  2012 metal releases.

This album starts off with “.:Y:.,” which is an interesting acoustic piece with some spoken word. “Father Serpent,” brings a really interesting take on black metal mixed with some technical death metal riffs. I was expecting straight up blackened riffs and got much more. The vocals were great as well, I was expecting black metal screams and got more understandable screams. The next track, “Acheron,” has very catchy riffs and nice bass bits. Dunderbeist make “row row row you’re boat” sound heavy. There is a great solo as well as lead parts on this track. Really in your face with the blast beats and fast shredding guitars comes with “Enter Exile,” which makes this track really chilling. I like the progressive break half way through, the vocalist’s style is really enjoyable. The flow of the guitars on “The Hidden Ones” is really amazing, with some really epic riffs and the solo is great as well.

The riffs on the album title track, “Songs of the Buried,” felt a tad more blackened than the rest which was what I assumed the whole album was going to be. “Centuries” starts off on a relaxing piano piece, which turn into more chilling riffs and great drums. This track feels way more black metal and is really great in its delivery. The mix between progressive and blackened styling of, “Four of the Seven,” made for a very interesting listen. There are some great bass riffs on this track and the lead guitar over them is really dark sounding. Brining more ear pounding is “Forcefed Boar's Head,” with chilling fast paced riffs and menacing drums. It is a really epic track with catchy riffs. The bass and guitar riffs on the last track, “Mongrel,” are really badass. The solo was nice as well and there is a great mix of heavy and mellow parts, making for a great conclusion to the album.

Dunderbeist really surprised me with this album. I went in assuming it would be straight up black metal, but what I found was most interesting. The mix of progressive, death, and black metal influenced riffs made for an odd mix. I also found the vocals to stand out as well, with the way they weren’t entirely forced and understandable. I recommend picking this up if you like progressive and black metal, but more so leaning to progressive.

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