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Thursday, January 24, 2013

Album Review : Dead Empires - Waiting in Waves

Back in 2011, I reviewed these cats prior to my foray over here on Heavy Planet. Strange to think it's been over 6 months since joining, and Dead Empires returned once more with a vicious sludgy, prog, post-metal behemoth. Their official debut record Waiting in Waves is a distinct progression forward, with the addition of a 2nd guitarist, and a melding of both their Savannah-style sludge, with Neurosis-caliber riff-mongering. All instrumental, all totally dirty

1. Carl Weathered- The opener is a hard driving up-beat psych metal tune. The drums on this track are enough to wreck a mans mind. Progressing from a slow psych romp, to an driving plethora of minor riffs, pushed forth by enough drum fills to beat up bill ward and accompanied by a series of freaky delayed guitar licks, the song climaxes with a slowed down freak-out.

2. Ted Dancin' - The 2nd tune begins with a fast paced hard-core style rhythm. It falls later into more vicious doom-riffery and melds it into a sort of modern-metal breakdown tease. I'd like to see some of those metal core kids use delay and high-hats as tastefully as these guys do. It grooves out with an uber-melodic major section.

3. Waiting in Waves- The title track has some of the cooler riffs on the record. Belligerent, punishing rock riffs with overlaid harmonics and wailing, howling reverbations. These guys spared no expense to push wet sounds that really float atop one another in-between the punching sludge riffs. 

4.Space Race- The continued exercise in echos. These guys keep punching forth with nasty space sounds before roaring into a sick double-guitar harmony in fifths, than the guitars double each-other. This tune is interesting because the tempo fluctuates between half-time and regular time, punishing riffs accompanied by slowed down doom sections.

5.Crystal Cages- This tune almost evokes Russian Circles. Swirling clean tones followed by roaring wah'd leads. The middle takes us on a galloping iron-maiden style fiasco before whirring into a grooving guitar solo. The song breaths venom until gracing us with a faux ending- this of course prior to the beastly pentagram-style brutality!

6.Blackout- Hitting it off with an ill syncopated riff before launching into a tribal set of sludge riffs, this tune is a lesson in how to play sludge metal. Grooving syncopation and powerful one off hits, and of course, the obligatory sections of weird free-jazz winding up in a climactic pounding of delayed scratchy guitars and down-right unstoppable drums.

7.Getting Head from a Guillotine- The funniest title on the album. Also starting with some spacy chorused guitars, the tune starts clean than flirts extensively with distortion until whirring through delayed weirdness into a momentous buildup preceding a wailing fury of a 2 guitar solos. The octaves which occur at the end of the first solo, give way to a serious amount of tense grooving drums. This grueling motion eventually reaches its peak blows out into an inter-galactic climax.

Overall, the record is hard-hitting and primal, the sounds giving way to motorized chaos and unstoppable trippiness. I really enjoyed the experimentation with delays that this band works with, as well as the contrast they create between parts. An asteroid solid post-metal record!


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