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Friday, 11 November 2016

Reviews: Enemy Of Reality, False Coda,1000mods, Inhuman Rage

Again I turn my attention to a glut of Greek bands currently releasing albums

Enemy Of Reality: Arakhne (F.Y.B Records)

Arakhne is the second album by the Athens based symphonic metal band, it is a concept album based on the ancient Hellenic myth of the spider's origins and creation. The record was recorded by George Emmanuel (Rotting Christ) and Mark Adrian and the production means that this record sounds huge, it's got the grand scale of a band such as Nightwish or Epica. They have certainly upped their game again with mature, extravagant symphonic metal where Iliana's operatic vocals work in tandem with the harsher vocals.

Due to the concept of the record, Arakhne has a heavier more dramatic sound, meaning that this record carries a weightier impact than their debut, the increasing use of symphonic elements is marked throughout but they don't let the more traditional metal sound fall away with shredding, double kick drums and crunchy metal still at the forefront. The orchestral elements are used to great effect on Showdown which is the records most cinematic songs and features guest vocals from Therion's Chiara Malvestiti.

She is one of a few very special guests on this record with in demand Fabio Lione duetting on Reflected while Nouthetisis has Annihilator's Jeff Waters shredding up a storm. Enemy Of Reality have come back with vengeance, their second album continues with the sound they were perfecting on their debut but just takes it to that next level, the progressiveness is more pronounced, the riffs are heavier and the orchestrations are grander all of which will get fans of this music excited. 8/10

False Coda: Secrets And Sins (Steel Gallery Records)

False Coda are from Salamina/Athens, their interesting progressive metal nods to genre originators Dream Theater and Fates Warning, but as the record progresses the songs share similarities with more melodic technicality of Circus Maximus and Italian's Kingcrow. The band was formed by drummer Andreas and guitarist brother Vasillis, before they recruited Stefanos on vocals, Nick on bass and Lefteris on the keys and you can hear that they all spar off each other throughout with funk bass, jazz drumming, intricate guitars, swathes of keyboards and sublime vocals. While the complexities of the musicianship are not immediately obvious after a few spins you can really hear just how talented the band are beneath the accessible song-driven glossy layer.

Secrets And Sins is the sophomore album from the band who's first release came out in 2014, they have supported Evergrey in their own country and you can hear the influence cut through the record on heavy piano led Truth And Lies. Throne Of Blood which opens the album is a mish-mash of several different influences, starting out with Eastern influences it builds into a louder more agitated riff as vocalist Stefanos unleashes a growl before the track moves into jazz experimentation. This experimentation continues over the course of the record, especially on the extended title track, the keyboard driven New Paradigm the doom-laden Monolith which is just that and features a guest guitar solo from Nevermore's Jeff Loomis and as the album comes to a close California comes from left-field. False Coda's style of progressive metal doesn't break boundaries but it is delivered with passion and skill and that's enough for any prog metal fan. 7/10

1000mods: Repeated Exposure To...(Ouga Booga And The Mighty Oug)

Repeated Exposure To... is a dedication by the Corinth band to the high end vintage gear used to record this record, the legend is carried on any high end gear warning of the issues you may have with volume created, basically this album is an ode to playing fricking loud! Luckily 1000mods know how to play loud, their heavy rock sound darts between 70's groove rock, 90's grunge and the stoner scene (the influence of which I've covered previously) with a love of classic gear the band have finally been able to get the sound they have been striving for on their previous records.

According to the press the record "was recorded with hi-end outboard equipment in a non-stop 24/7 session and produced by both the band and sound engineer George Leodis" this heavy work rate and use of quality sound equipment really shines through as this is the best sounding record the band have done the rhythm section has a deep, rich groove, the guitar riffs are fuzzy and it's all nice and analogue, the record is full of huge riffs and lots of instrumental jam sections that sees the band locking into a groove. Loud and very heavy indeed 1000mods latest album sounds like a mix of Soundgarden and Monster Magnet and that is never a bad thing. 8/10

Inhuman Rage: Made By His Image... Killing To His Name (Straight From The Heart)

Thessaloniki thrashers Inhuman Rage grab you by the collar and get round to shaking your bones as fast as possible. This is heavyweight thrash metal with croaking death metal vocals from Vas, much like bands such as Death, Vader and Possessed the riffs are played with ferocity by Kostats and Stelios and Kostas' solos blast out at lightning speed. The ultra-fast drumming of Tasos bangs the head repeatedly never really slowing even on the more stomping sections.

Made By His Image... is a very aggressive record with patches of progginess on the title track which is dominated by the bass of George and takes in the light and shade that is often lacking in these releases. If you like your metal full of throat shredding vocals and a musical backing that is a melee of kick drums and down tuned lighting quick riffs, then Inhuman Rage will be the perfect pit starting music, yes the production is a little muffled meaning it hasn't got the usual crystalline DM sound but the thrashy grittiness makes this record a far nastier prospect. Spitting bile at the political elite, war and death Made By His Image... is a powerful death/thrash release from the Thessaloniki band. 7/10

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