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Masser – Chain of Gifts

Chain of Gifts
by Dave "That Metal Guy" Campbell at 02 December 2022, 2:49 PM

Despite my best efforts scouring the internet, I could not find much information on this band. From Bandcamp, their sound is described as “drawing influence from dark and epic soundtracks from films and video games, MASSER blends soaring atmospheres with powerful instrumentation to create immersive fantasy-inspired soundscapes. “Chain of Gifts” has seven songs. “Amber Flame” is the first. The sound out of the gates is both heavy and melodic, and the singer has a nice voice. The music is smooth and mellow and also has enough of a harden edge to appease most Metalheads.

The title track has some really nice vocal harmonies in the opening sequence. Harsh vocals enter from there, as the music ascends into more aggressive tones. The push and pull of the two varying sounds are locked together in a dance to the death. “Dogs of War” is heavier and more aggressive in the opener, but when those clean vocal harmonies come, so does a wave of euphoria. I am not familiar with Gideon’s earlier work, but he does a really nice job with developing melodies on this album. “Immolation of the Scared Groove” is a really well rounded song from the combination of tranquil melodies over a bed of steadily heavy grooves. The backing keyboards help to round out the sound, while the harsh vocals keep it excitable.

“Innocence” is a slower and more thoughtful song with elegant vocals. It is quite easy to get lost in this sound, there is no doubt about that. Even the harsh vocals come with melody, and the chorus is rich and satisfying. What a charming sound that comes with just enough of a heavy bottom end. “Purity” is a very short song that mostly features mellow tones and a cool, smooth breeze blowing through your hair. “The Fortress” closes the album, with a heavy groove that will get your head bopping. The fury of the vocals and instruments is bested only by the wonderful harmonies in the chorus.

These songs have a nostalgic feeling to them, reminding me of the smooth songs of the 80’s, but also an exciting modern edge, like something shiny, and new. After seven songs, I found myself wanting more, but I understand that rather than creating extra songs that could be interpreted as some by filler, the album is actually concise and not overdone in that regard. As I mentioned before, it’s very easy to get lost in the melodies, and to get caught up in some of the more sweeping sounds on the album. The Metal edge just adds to the flavor.

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

4 Star Rating

1. Amber Flame
2. Chain of Gifts
3. Dogs of War
4. Immolation of the Sacred Groove
5. Innocence
6. Purity
7. The Fortress
Gideon Waxman
Record Label: Independent


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