Label: The Artisan Era
Release date: 7 June 2019
Country: United States
Format reviewed: High-quality Digital Promo
Death Metal takes many shapes and forms. Sometimes it’s a dank cavernous tomb or a non-stop barrage of shell casings, and other times it’s an insidiously beautiful light dangling in front of a deadly toothed beast. FLUB are the latter, playing a technical and progressive form of death metal full of breakneck paced brutality, fantastic riffs, and no shortage of interesting twists and turns. FLUB came into inception around 2013, putting out a few EP’s. But apparently they were getting ahead of themselves with the bands stacked line up of progressive and technical death metal musicians taking a few years away from FLUB to work on music with other bands (you may have heard of Alterbeast, Vale of Pnath, and Rivers of Nihil?). The time for FLUB to reemerge is upon us all, releasing their first full-length self-titled album through The Artisan Era on June 7.
Like a slew of other experimental death metal bands, FLUB’s compelling writing paints complex storylines in my minds eye. The visually stunning cover art and symmetrical song titles help construct the thoughts of an injured protagonist’s journey into the gardens of death. Things start out with “Last Breath” and “Blossom” which highlight the main staple of the arsenal with heavy technical progressions that still hold a strong melodies akin to bands like Inferi and Allegaeon. However, they also remind me of bands like Between the Buried and Me, Beyond Creation, and Equipoise with odd breakdown formats and verse transitions under heavy bass lines and weird instrumental choices like the xylophone.
“Umbra Mortis” starts on a slightly different tangent, channeling more of a Scale the Summit and Animals as Leaders vibe with an eccentric pace and jazzy time signatures. FLUB consistently deliver on interesting complex instrumentals with each riff and drum progression building momentum and perfectly suited to the current dynamic. The next few songs as well as the closing track on the album continue to deliver the satisfaction and keep the pace going with “Dream”, “Rise From Your Grave”, “Rebirth”, and “Wild Smoke” all fantastic.
I am a fan of how FLUB handled the clean vocals on the album.“Rebirth” starts with a slow and thoughtful piano piece nicely accented by a short but sweet clean vocal verse. They didn’t try to push a catchy chorus down our throats but instead delivered a unique powerful verse which transitions the song and story with a full stop hard reset. The calm before the storm before all is lost in chaos; Juxtaposition at its finest. Unfortunately there is another clean bit at the end of the song, which in my opinion should have been axed, but either way job well done.
FLUB are just another brilliant example of modern metal bands continuing to push the boundaries of technical ability and sound in their music. Every song is full of compelling moments and quirks that stick in your head. Although I enjoyed the vocals throughout the album, I preferred the heavier growls over the higher tones which both had an equal presence. Lucky for me I get to see these guys live this summer, but I would take the opportunity as well to see them now if you can with their other projects sure to take up their time in the future. So what the Flub are you waiting for? Check these guys out!! 9/10 Metal Yeti
9/10 : Epic Storm!!
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