Friday, October 18, 2019

review: Xoth

Interdimensional Invocations
18 October 2019
1.Casting the Sigil 04:52
2.Mountain Machines 03:53
3.Back to the Jungle 05:06
4.Unseen Abductor 04:58
5.Haruspex 04:24
6.Plague Revival 20XX 05:27
7.The Ghost Hand of God 03:47
8.Melted Face of the Soul 06:43
total time 39:10
Washington State’s Xoth is made up of skilled and experienced musicians in extreme metal. In 2019 they follow up their 2014 EP and the 2016 album with a second full-length of their own brand of “space shred,” as they like to call their headbanging technical/progressive catchy recipe of thrash/death/black/heavy metal virtuosity.
The team of recording people and the band have something good going on. Xoth and team work to achieve clarity. The music often sounds like technical progressive melodic black thrash, if that makes sense, and there is a serious effort to let fans hear the instruments. For instance, for any metal musician or fan that has ever complained that they cannot hear the bass guitar in extreme metal, then listen to this album and find out for yourself. This is fast extreme metal, but there is some nasty, mean bass guitar all over this thing, and it's a thing of beauty. As for the drums, this publication cannot confirm if what we hear on the album is the real drums that the drummer played in the studio, or if it’s sampled drumming.
The best thing about Xoth’s instrumentation is that they have awesome skills, experience and talents and all those things, but it is not so show-off that you cannot follow it. It’s a happy medium in which these mad weirdo geniuses of metal are aware that most of us mortals have limited patience and intelligence. You can show off a little bit, but don’t get too crazy because there are other bands competing for your attention and if yours cannot hold my attention, I will find one that does. This band understands this dilemma very well. As a result, the band is happy and so are the listeners. Having said, just remember that Xoth is going to put on a clinic for how to play technical/progressive extreme metal and make it comprehensible for headbangers.
The vocalist is either Gollum ("My precious!") or Gollum's sibling. The vocals are black metal. There is death metal growling, too, but by far it is the black metal vocals that you will remember. As for the lyrics, this band has a fascination with ancient cataclysmic events, like volcanoes and earthquakes wiping out everything in sight, and ancient diseases destroying life on a massive scale and then that virus goes dormant under the icebergs only to reappear again when the ice melts and that disease once again wipes everything out. Alien machinery on other planets, alien machinery on this planet, giant octopuses travelling through space and time, and things like that are what this band writes about. It's both morbid, dorky, sciencey, science, and science fiction. Unfortunately, they shoot themselves in the foot by making their lyrics R and X rated, and they do curse, so you’ll have to consider that.
The best thing about Xoth is that they know how to rock out. They may be deranged metal scientists, but man, these nerds know to make music for a mosh pit!

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