The Pitch: Nobody captures the essence of 90's progressive death metal like New York's Contrarian. Hear about their latest album from Willowtip Records. FFO: Cynic, Mithras, Horrendous. PODCAST
What I Like: There are several "nostalgia bands" floating around right now, but few impress me to the same degree as Contrarian. Unlike the likes of Gruesome who seem hard-pressed to imitate a specific sound, these guys just seem to start writing and the resulting albums naturally roll into a bygone aesthetic. Following up 2017's already impressive To Perceive Is To Suffer, Their Worm Never Dies is another release that truly sounds like some lost recording from Studio Fredman...or maybe Contrarian were just born in the wrong era. While listening, it was impossible to avoid thinking about my first experiences with Dark Tranquillity's The Gallery or later discovering Cynic. Their Worm Never Dies possesses both an uncanny resemblance to the production style of those albums as well as overall approach to riffs and atmosphere. And of course it doesn't hurt that the guitar and drum performances are impressively technical.
Critiques: There are certain riffs, particularly on "Among The Misled" that, at least to me, come off as kind of annoying. The example in question starts just a few seconds in and recurs several times throughout the track. I know other writers who really like this more discordant approach to prog, but it tends to rub me the wrong way.
The Verdict: If I'm just stacking up the discography, To Percieve Is To Suffer is the superior album. That said, fans of this style should still pick up Their Worm Never Dies, because alongside Horrendous, the dudes in Contrarian are taking the old school sound to a new level entirely. Get it this Friday.
Flight's Fav's: Vaskania (The Evil Eye), Exorcism, My Curse
- Review by FlightOfIcarus
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