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Escarion – Pillars of the Faith Award winner

Escarion
Pillars of the Faith
by Dave "That Metal Guy" Campbell at 22 November 2020, 4:33 AM

ESCARION is a four-piece Melbourne-based Death Metal band following in the eclectic vein of bands like DEATH, BEHEMOTH, and TRIVIUM to form a sound that is altogether brutal, progressive and confronting. This album is an investigation of the human psyche, contrasted with the idea of the 'The Seven Deadly Sins'. When one engaging in these 'sins', are they mortally wounding their soul, their character, or are they following their human nature? Should these be embraced as part of oneself or discarded? Answers to these questions come at the helm of the album’s nine tracks.

“Inferno” leads off the album. It opens with a melancholic passage of clean guitars and some symphonic elements in the background. The main riff drops, and it’s heavy and momentous. The vocals are harsh and there are also some technical elements at play here. The riff changes to a faster sound and a dexterous guitar solo shows some grit. “Envy” is of course the sin of wanting what others have. It begins with some fanciful guitar work, leading to more Progressive leanings along with some heavy technical moments to boot. One thing that the band is not short on is talent.

“Gluttony” is the sin of eating too much. It begins with an evil sounding riff, and in comes some lead guitar notes. The pace is slow at first. Bass guitar notes usher in the main riff. Some more of those Progressive/Technical elements are present here. The vocals reflect the harsh and evil sound. “Lust” is the sin of wanting someone sexually. It opens with a riff that moves here and there, and a mouthful of harsh vocals, high in the registry. The clean guitar passage at the end is really nicely done. “Greed” is the sin of wanting to hoard money. It opens with glittering guitar leads the main riff is fast picked with some heavy accents. The riff changes about as many times as you can count. The guitar solo almost sound like an IRON MAIDEN passage, surprisingly.

“Pride” is the sin of not giving in. It’s a beast of a song, clocking in at over eight-minutes in length. Opening with slow, sad and dark tones, you imagine yourself throwing in the towel at life in general. As it moves along, that feeling becomes more pronounced. This song is both powerful and moving at the same time. “Wrath” is the sin of vengeance. It begins with a faster moving guitar riff and a scream. The passage with piano notes border on Black Metal for me. Again, the riffs are almost always a moving target. “Sloth” is laziness. It opens with a raucous energy, flowing from the guitars mostly. There are also some moments of melody here, though they are dark. The riffing moves around a bit, ever-shifting, to keep the listener on their toes.

“Home (Where the Heart is)” closes the album. It begins with a mid-tempo groove and vocals that are vile. Once again, there is an abundance of riffing present, something that is often the case in the Death Metal genre. There is an ambient passage around the half-way mark, where the sound drops but remains dark. It returns with a vengeance moving to completion. Overall, this was a fierce listening experience, where the band showed their collective musical chops with some highly technical and progressive elements, as well as strong songwriting skills. It also offered something a bit off the beaten path when it comes to the uniformity of the Death Metal genre. Well done, gents.

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

4 Star Rating

Tracklist:
1. Inferno
2. Envy
3. Gluttony
4. Lust
5. Greed
6. Pride
7. Wrath
8. Sloth
9. Home (Where the Heart is)
Lineup:
Tommy Lewko – Guitar
Rhys McKenzie – Bass Guitar
John Arhondis – Guitar and Vocals
Tim Bottams – Drums and Percussion
Record Label: Independent
     


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Edited 03 December 2020
 

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