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Outcast - Awaken The Reason

Awaken The Reason
by Lior "Steinmetal" Stein at 12 April 2012, 3:21 PM

"Remember what you cannot see, expect the unexpected…". These words weren't mine but were those of the late Chuck Schuldiner of the DEATH and CONTROL DENIED fames. Except from what one cannot see in the sentence, as it is more what one cannot hear, this was the suitable way for me to describe the greatness I witness in the new album of the French Progressive Thrash / Death Metal band OUTCAST. "Awaken The Reason", via Listenable Records, left me somewhat confused but mystified by its highly complex and constructive structures and energetic composure. I know that some of you that will read these lines, while listening to the tracks maybe, might think that there is nothing steady throughout the album. In a way you will be right, but there is more to it than the lack of flow.

First of all, alongside other bands that have been doing something of the same like ATHEIST for instance, the OUTCAST members are more than qualified pack of musicians. Playing such complex and hard to comprehend shifts of tempo, light and harsh, takes talent and but these guys have it in plenty. Second, and that is also why I liked most of the material around here like the great music pieces of "Fallen Years", "Abysmal" and "Spin Angular Momenta", nothing is obvious and it was composed with good taste. OUTCAST created great melodies, inflaming solos, well played odd time signatures and off beat thumps and breaks with a clear sign to all that they are constantly on the move and there is no one to stop their train from moving forward. Along with a tight production that intensified almost every moment of the band's accurate playing, OUTCAST are on the right way to become a prime act in their scene. Such diversity made in good quality can't be shaken down that fast.

On the other hand, and that is what I think is a bit slowing OUTCAST down is the fact that their longer tracks consist some section that aren't necessarily needed in order to lay down a good music piece on the table. There were greatly formed segments where I felt as if OUTCAST were searching what to do next while improvising and showing off their skills. Maybe they forgot that they were still recording at that time. These were the moments where I thought that OUTCAST were experimenting while recording instead of sticking to the permanent material. Either way I am sure that the band would say otherwise but that is a feeling channeled from several of their outputs. Even so I still urge you to sweep this release, it is well worth it and it has a soul attached.

4 Star Rating

1. Elements
2. Abysmal
3. A Solace from the Shade
4. Awaken the Reason - Part IV: When Dawn Brings Clarity
5. Spin Angular Momenta
6. Unspoken
7. Isolation
8. Fallen Years
9. What Would Be My Final Commitment?
10. Man's Last Failure
11. Awaken the Reason - Part XI : Reprise 
Mathieu Santin- Drums
Clément Mauro- Bass
Wilfried Fagnon- Vocals
Nicolas Soulat- Guitars
Jean-François Di Rienzo- Guitars
Record Label: Listenable Records


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