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AvatariA - The Last Falling Award winner

AvatariA
The Last Falling
by Gary Hernandez at 24 November 2019, 7:00 AM

AVATARIA has been around since 2009. They call themselves a Dark Thrash Metal band and cite influences from Thrash, Death, Black, and Gothic Metal. No arguing that. I’d say Dark Thrash Metal exactly sums their sound up. Regardless of what you want to label them, they are exceptional at what they do. They hail from Berlin, Germany and have four full-length albums to their credit, including their most recent release: “The Last Falling.”

I’ll say right up front that this is very good album. That’s the easy part. The hard part is describing why it’s so great. Let’s start off with this: With “The Last Falling” you get eight tracks of constantly shifting and nuanced styles that are as fluid as they are heavy. It sounds like it shouldn’t work, but it does and remarkably so. Sometimes you are knee deep in Blackened, Thrash accented with these breakout moments of explosive riffs and haunting solos; sometimes you’re in a maelstrom of Atmospheric Black Metal when some substratum plate jolts and you find yourself in a segment of acoustic Prog or pounding Death. All of this is done flawlessly with no disruptions to the flow.

I’ll highlight some of my favorite tracks and then leave it up to you to experience this album on your own terms. The first track, “Down on Your Knees,” is one of the heaviest and most straightforward tracks on the album (though “Alive” may actually be heavier). The first 43 seconds are absolutely scathing. I hit replay about six times before I could let myself listen to the rest of the song, which holds up just as well as the intro. There are moments in this song that are just brutally exquisite. As good as this song is, the remaining seven tracks are also excellent, albeit in very different ways. “Blutmond” (trans: blood moon) is supported by a video, which does a great job of capturing the essence of this tale. Leading off with a ghostly acoustical intro it quickly transitions into heavy melodic tremolo then blackened riffs underscoring Tommy’s raw, guttural vocals. In this song, as well as several others, the lyrics are delivered in what I presume is German. Language wise, German seems like the perfect pairing for this album. I do appreciate the English tracks, but the German tracks seem a bit more authentic.

Other notable tracks are “Dunkelheit” (trans: darkness). In this track, as well as “End of Time,” you can hear the Gothic Metal flowing through. “Suffering” is a personal favorite of mine. Between the lead guitar work, the deepened riffs, and alternating guttural and clean vocals, there’s a tremendous amount of depth to this track. And, as you might expect, the final track, “The Last Falling,” is a bit of a Magnus Opus for the album. All together, “The Last Falling” is an impressive album on multiple levels. The songwriting, the fluidity of styles, the production values are all exceptional. A lot of bands claim they cross multiple sub-genres, but it’s typically an excuse for sloppiness. In the case of AVATARIA, these guys are the real deal.

Songwriting: 9
Musicianship: 9
Memorability: 8
Production: 8

4 Star Rating

Tracklist:
1. Down on Your Knees
2. Forsaken
3. Blutmond
4. End of Time
5. Dunkelheit
6. Suffering
7. Alive
8. The Last Falling
Lineup:
Tommy – Vocals, guitars
Radu – Drums
Artur – Bass, vocals (backing)
Sören – Guitars, vocals (backing)
Record Label: 7Hard Records
     


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Edited 08 December 2019
 

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