The Pitch: Only a year after their excellent album Covenant, German progressive metal band Unprocessed return with more djenty music via Long Branch Records. FFO: Textures, Animals As Leaders, Tesseract
What I Like: While it's clear from the very Periphery-esque, hard-hitting "Prototype" that Unprocessed haven't abandoned their heavier roots, Artificial Void still represents a fairly different chapter of their career. For much of the album's duration, the band lean further into their softer, more melodic side. While Tesseract and Animals As Leaders were already strong reference points, this album pulls on these influences even harder while frequently leaving After The Burial at the wayside. Now me personally, it's the crunchier tunes that led me to name Covenant among my favorite albums of 2018. I love dynamics and variation, but it's still tracks like "Antler's Decay" and "The Movements, Their Echoes" that really get my motor running. That said, I'd be hard pressed to complain about the funky, bass-heavy interlude of the title track.
Critiques: And so the shifts on this album are a mixed bag for me, but one that is likely pretty subjective. Fans of Tesseract will probably eat this up, but personally, I've always found that band to be a little boring. If you feel the same, some of the softer passages may have a similar effect. For instance, the opening minutes of "Ruins" could be stronger. I love the overall structure and way in which the song builds to a triumphant closer, but it's kind of a chore to get there. No bad songs, just moments.
The Verdict: If you're new to the band and prefer your music on the heavier side, I'd start with Covenant before venturing on to Artificial Void. But if you like drifting dreamscapes of jazz and post-metal in your progressive music, look no further. In either case, Unprocessed are an undeniably talented musicians with nary a weak link among them. They deserve more attention. Spread the word.
Flight's Fav's: Prototype, Antler's Decay, The Movements, Their Echoes
- Review by FlightOfIcarus
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