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Pentarium – Zwischenwelt

by Dave "That Metal Guy" Campbell at 08 May 2018, 12:22 PM

German sextet PENTARIUM are a Melodic Death Metal band, relatively new to the scene as they formed in 2006. They did not release their first full-length album however until ten years into their career, On May 11, 2018, they present their follow up sophomore effort titled “Zwischenwelt,” which contains twelve new tracks.

“13” establishes their sound on the album. It’s dark, heavy and brooding, and reminds me of early DARK TRANQUILITY, especially in the use of the haunting piano notes. The vocals are quite divserse; rumbling in the lower ranges and searing in the higher. “Flames” has an eerie and mysterious sound in the opening sequence. The synths really add nice layers to the track. The riffs vary in this mid-tempo grind, making for a shifting sound that stays fresh throughout. “Rise of the Outer Gods” has a punishing but majestic sound with subtle melodies and strong chord progressions. Listen closely and you will see these Gods descending from the universe and taking physical form in our world.

“Stare into Darkness” is another eerie offering with some great supporting synth work. It rides a fence between light and dark elements, sometimes sounding bright and other times dejected. I’m not entirely sold on the connection between the two, but it is an interesting method. Bass work opens the track “Wo Worte Vesagen,” which has some clean vocal harmonies in the chorus to go along with the lumbering main riff. The guitars are drop-tuned for a maximum effect in depth. “Dal Mon” is really the first song so far that has a little more speed to it. The album clearly has aimed at borrowing into the underground with its pacing. I’m not sure the clean vocals work here as well as they could, though their sadness is noteworthy.

“Beyond” has a brutal and gut-wrenching sound, reminding me of the heavier side of a band like SCAR SYMMETRY. They work in some nice melodies here but they are not completely out in the open. “Nordlicht” has a great opening exchange between synths and guitar. There is also a good connection in the rhythm between the vocals and the main riff, as well as some supporting lead guitar notes that aren’t done as a solo. “Vor Dem Sturm” might be the melancholy sound that I’ve been enjoying the most on the album. Piano is a wonderful medium in the Metal genre, and they lamenting clean vocals sung in their native language puts a doleful stamp at the end of the album.

Overall, this was a pleasurable and pretty consistent listening experience. On a longer album such as this, it’s hard to push twelve tracks and still be able to distinguish all of the song from one another however. It’s even harder when the pacing of many of the tracks is the same. Cleaning up a couple of these things could have made what I would call a “good” album “great.” They have all the elements of the genre down well but is just needed a boost in the dynamics.

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

3 Star Rating

1. 13
2. Nekropolos
3. Flames
4. Rise of the Outer Gods
5. Abschied
6. Stare into Darkness
7. Wo Worte Versagen
8. Memoria
9. Dal Mon
10. Beyond
11. Nordlicht
12. Vor Dem Sturm
Carsten Linhs – Vocals
Hendrik Voss – Guitars
Florian Jahn – Guitars
Fabian Laurentzsch – Bass
Philip Burkhard – Keyboards/Synths
Max Peev – Drums
Record Label: Boersma Records


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