Wednesday, 26 February 2014

Usual Locations Teil Vier: Be'Lakor & The Eternal

My focus-beam will now be aimed at the land known as Fourecks, sorry I mean, Australia. For some reason whenever I think of the music scene in Australia all I can think of is AC/DC, INXS and Kylie. And I've got to say I'm not a big fan of any of those, I might listen to AC/DC but I wouldn't go out of my way to buy an album. But then again, I do listen an awful lot of Nick Cave. So there is that. There does appear to be an awful lot of different music stylings being composed and published down there, but somehow never leave the shore.  These two these two bands that I am going to discuss sound like something else, and while I'd hope that both could gain some monumental success, I'd suspect that the first one would struggle but the second one could easily win people hearts and minds, especially if they continue in the vein of their last album.


First of we'll start with the behemoth(The monster not the band) sounding Be'Lakor. First time I cam across them was when there was a fairly frequent discussion and review requests on Angry Metal Guy's Facebook page. Their description didn't exactly light my fire. Melodic Death Metal. It's a genre I've never really got into, and not for lack of trying. I tried quite a few of the Gothenburg bands that pioneered that style and I just can't get into it, besides maybe Gardenian. But these guys are a bit more special. The first album I listened to was their rather phenomenal 'Of Breath and Bone', which has pretty much got a world wide wholly positive reviews. So I decided to check them out. And boy did it blow me away. Well.... Maybe not at first. These guys have been around since 2004 and were at one point hailed as "Best Unsigned Band in Metal" by MetalSucks. That obliviously isn't true any more but listening to their debut album 'The Frail Tide' I can understand why people were getting excited. On the whole. These guys have melodies in spade. No. They have melody in barge loads.  The amount of times when I've had people in my ear complaining that metal didn't have melody and was just noise, seriously shut the fuck up and put these guys on and then get back to me. Just in the first two songs you've heard enough melodies, enough musical changes and tempo changes that would usually fill 2 albums by lesser bands. One thing that I found brilliant about their music, their last album especially, is that there is this common thread that is woven into every song making the whole album play like it's just one song. After some listens I was going to say that their weak point is their singer, but after a few more listens I realised I was wrong. He growls and shrieks at the right points, often sounding a bit like a Daemon Storyteller, thus lending a certain malevolent air to the whole thing. But seriously though, the intricacy that all member manage to play their respective instruments and weave and wave around each other with apparently very little effort is astounding. Just listen to the beginning of of 'Remnants' there seems to be a near constant guitar solo on the go somewhere in the background which have been turned into main riffs with such an elegant ease. I am aware of other bands that play similar to these guys, and I've given a fair few of them a listen. But none have the both the staying power or the pull-back power for me as these guys do. I always return for more. These guys do deserve every accolade that surely is coming their way. And if more people had sense they'd be touring the world right now.




The Eternal, now these guys have got the sound to make it big. They've been going for a while though admittedly they changed names in 2003 from Cryptal Darkness. Which was the best decision of their career. It would appear that they read Anathema's textbook on "How to Change Your Sound Successfully". They've gone from this rather generic boring Death/Doom/Grindcore and moved, successfully to alternative rock. With a half-way stop at Gothic Metal. I only came across these guys when I was trudging the muddy waters at the Dark Port. Maybe it's no coincidence that these guys have toured with Anathema come to think of it. But yeah, their last album 'When the Circle of Light Begins to Fade' is very much up the Anathema territory. Melodic, slightly meloncholic, and stadium worthy.  They still retain some of the Gothic element, but most of it has been shed away (Thankfully to be honest, generally gothic doesn't float my boat). On the whole they haven't quite reached Anathema's but they're getting there. No doubt about it. I'm not going to spout of that their last album is a classic in the waiting (Unlike Be'Lakor - Of Breath And Bone). But the riffs are there, the singing is there, the production isn't quite there though soundwise it is crystal clear, there just seems to be something missing and I can't quite put my finger on it. But until I can I will listen to the album over and over again.


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