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Needless – Heresy

by Santiago Puyol at 17 August 2019, 11:13 PM

Hungarian Death Metal band NEEDLESS was formed in 2004 in Dánszentmiklós, and has released "Heresy" as their debut album 15 years after that. This album follows the EP "The Dark Spirit of Ages" from 2015. The band combines elements of Death Metal with bits of Progressive, Black and Thrash Metal.

"Babel's Fall" opens with a very OPETH-like sound, emphasizing folk and acoustic melodies. The electric ones enter with force, shortly after, and the distortion gives way to shifting time signatures and complex drumming. Ádám Forczek's singing finds the perfect balance between discernible, deep growls and high-pitched harsh vocals that highlight certain moments.

Things take a more brutal turn with "The Monolith". Moving closer to the technical side of Progressive Death Metal, guitars and drums advance with extreme speed, nearly sounding like a machine gun. Strange sounds and an exotic melody on the guitar complete the picture before a noisy and screeching solo. Also, with a mechanical and almost robotic sound, "Starcult" adds an angrier vocal delivery.

"Prophet of Ivory" begins with a dramatic spoken word, before giving way to some intense riffing that vaguely evokes GOJIRA. The dramatic atmosphere remains in Forczek's phrasing, sounding closer to classic Metal. The song ends with a beautiful and unexpected coda of synthesizers, almost preparing the listener for the melodic beginning of "Marked by a Black Sigil", heavily influenced by Post-Rock. Strange sounds and a heartbeat sampling bring PINK FLOYD to mind, before returning to the sound of the rest of the album.

"On a Journey to Sublunaris" adds little to the rest of the album, while "Night of the Hunt", on the other hand, packs considerable diversity and guitar soloing in spite of its length. Functioning as a perfect second to last song, it is a highlight of drummer Zoltán Németh.

Closer "Sky Burial" is the epic of the album at over nine minutes long. After a dramatic BLACK SABBATH-inspired intro, it sets into a nice, heavy groove and complex playing before dropping into an OPETH-like breakdown at 4:26. Some Flamenco influences bleed into a lengthy acoustic section, before the band gets into a thrashier mood, with some METALLICA-esque patterns. Things end with a mysterious yet uplifting coda. The sound of rain and thunderstorm feels like a fitting ending, but it fades a bit too soon.

"Heresy" is a solid debut album for NEEDLESS. The production, without being perfect, is appropriate for the album and is more than satisfactory. Despite the complexity of the songwriting, it' s a banger. The more folk influences of bands like OPETH, NE OBLIVISCARIS or AMORPHIS give a particular sound to the band. They never sound like imitators though.

Songwriting: 8
Originality: 7
Memorability: 7
Production: 7

3 Star Rating

1. Babel’s Fall
2. The Monolith
3. Starcult
4. Prophet of Ivory
5. Marked by a Black Sigil
6. On a Journey Sublunaris
7. Night of the Hunt
8. Sky Burial
Bánfalvi László – Bass
Bárány Tamás – Guitars
Botond Fogl – Guitars
Németh Zoltán – Drums
Forczek Ádám – Vocals
Record Label: Independent


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