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On disc: Alchemist



- Austral Alien - Claudia Ehrhardt - 9 stars
- Tripsis - Claudia Ehrhardt - 8 stars


www.alchemist.com.au







Tripsis

Tripsis
(Relapse Rec. - 2007)


This is the 6th album of the Australian band Alchemist and with their 2003 release Austral Alien they got some attention. Now their latest work - called Tripsis - is ready for the metal world to listen. Musically the band often get categorized as death metal, but death metal fans might disagree, coz the sound of Alchemist is complex and atmospheric and makes one think of bands like Neurosis, Voivod, Opeth and perhaps Isis...
They kick off with Wrapped In Guilt, a wall of sound is coming at you. Massive guitar riffs and a powerful rhythm section almost drown the raspy shouts of singer / guitarist Adam Agius. The Alchemist sound is more raw then on Austral Alien. But still has some atmospheric elements, complex patterns and so a progressive touch. A different facet of their sound is shown at Tongues And Knifes which is brutal and at the same time has something fragile... And psychedelic. Sounds weird? Well, Alchemist is a strange mixture of sounds which pulls the listener into their sound universe. At other songs they include electronic sounds, but are closer to Ministry then to some gothic or electronic bands. Samples add some surprising moments. If you listen to Grasp At Air you will get an idea about it, but still it's only a facet of their sound which is more brutal and thrashy again.
This album is a challenge. The band from Canberra isn't taking the easy road, they stick to their sound conglomerate. It's impossible to pick one track or recommend some, you have to listen to the whole album to explore the world of Alchemist.


8 stars

Claudia Ehrhardt
 

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Austral Alien

Austral Alien
(Relapse Rec. - 2003)


How many bands do you know from Down Under? Not many, I guess. Well, Alchemist is from Australia and out to conquer the world with their metal melange. The quartet combines metal with progressive, psychedelic sounds and ethnic instruments. Since fall 2001 the Australians have a distribution for Europe and Relapse Records released then Organasm. Now their latest piece of work is available - Austral Alien. Sometimes the Australians remind me of ELP, like a metal version of ELP. The opening track First Contact is a progressive heavy metal tune sometimes with rough vocals - like on First Contact -, sometimes with ingratiating vocals - like on Alpha Cappella Nova Vega. The keyboard creates soundscapes which combined with metallic guitars and melodic clear vocals enchants you. The next moment a heavy metal thunder comes over you. Very interesting! Singer and guitarist Adam Agius and his mates are crossing boarders, don't expect limitations through genres. After more then 10 years the band has now the chance to catch the interest of metal fans around the world. One of my favorites is Solarburn. Enchanting. The musical mixture of is outstanding and can't be explained with words. I can highly recommend you to listen to this unusual band.
Check out: Alpha Cappella Nova Vega, Solarburn, Nature On A Leash...


9 stars

Claudia Ehrhardt
 

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           2008-2010 by Claudia Ehrhardt • E-Mail: contact@ice-vajal.com


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