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Release the Blackness - Tragedy

Release the Blackness
Tragedy
by Dave "That Metal Guy" Campbell at 26 December 2020, 8:37 AM

“Tragedy” is the first full length album of the Italian Progressive Death Metal band RELEASE THE BLACKNESS. The main theme behind "Tragedy" is the variety of ways in which men perceive and face tragic events throughout their life. Whenever we live a dark time we are forced into a cycle of sorrow that can lock us forever or make us stronger and better human beings. Some might negate the events living by memories and illusions, others may be swallowed by apathy and become numb to feelings, but in the end these are all steps we have to go through before being able to break the cycle. The songs in the album target various possible reactions to tragic events mixed with personal experiences, thus creating an intimate and raw narration. The album contains ten tracks.

“Trenodia” leads us off. It’s a short, mood-setting instrumental, with clean guitars and an air of darkness. Thunderous drumming rolls in soon after, with female vocal chants, segueing into “Ancestral Inheritance.” This track begins with fast-moving cars, vocal screams and impossibly fast drumming. The guitars and bass provide much of the sound here…they are ever moving and shifting. The guitar solo is also quite well done, and it’s obvious these guys have talent. “Where Voids Gather” begins with doleful clean guitars that give way to a slow and heavy riff, with some background ambiance. Once again, the guitars really steal the show here. The duo is quite strong. Some more technical and progressive elements are represented here.

“As Cold Snow and Flesh” begins with a low and fast-picked guitar riff, leading to a chaotic structure with raging vocals. The riff changes hands as well as the meter here, indicating some strong musicianship and inventive songwriting. “Blank Sun” begins with sad, clean vocals and the vocal harmonies are great. It’s also a nice temperance song to the others which are intense in sound. Harsh vocals eventually take over, but that depressive sound remains. “Enlightened by Emptiness” begins with a series of pull-offs in the guitars, thick and heavy bass notes, powerful drumming and more of those raging vocals. There is a heavy breakdown around the half-way mark.

“E Mi Sovvien l’Eterno” is a two-minute instrumental break from the previous madness. This song might represent someone in the “giving up” stage of dealing with tragedy, or the opposite…dealing with it in a firm manner. I like how the band lets it up to the listener to decide. “Samsara” is a nine-minute opus. The song is packed full of various elements, including a dark and ambient passage that allows you a second to breathe. A breakdown with spoken words slides into the song, followed by an intense passage of exquisite guitar work. The transitions in and out of these passages are seamless.

“The Flower on the Precipice” goes right for your life out of the gates, with a heavy and aggressive riff that glides up and down the scale with ease. The drum work is once again outstanding, and vocals uncompromising. Out of the blue comes this nice clean passage, followed by a glittering guitar solo. “The Bloom of Solitude” closes the album. It’s a clean song with staccato guitar notes and no vocals. I like the way this song rolls and wish there could have been a bit more of this sound on the album.

Overall, it was a little hard to follow the concept of how people deal with tragedy, because most of the songs were just too fast, heavy, and technically progressive. Now, mind you, this isn’t a bad thing at all outside of the concept. The band is obviously talented, and to deal with as many transitions that they throw at you and still be able to keep the structure of the sound is impressive. They are on point with bands like OBSCURA and BEYOND CREATION, but without over-doing some of the overly technical elements. I just wish there were a few more moments of levity, or other elements to break up some of the intensity. Still, overall, an excellent album.

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

4 Star Rating

Tracklist:
1. Trenodia
2. Ancestral Inheritance
3. Where Voids Gather
4. As Cold Snow and Flesh
5. Blank Sun
6. Enlightened by Emptiness
7. E Mi Sovvien l’Eterno
8. Samsara
9. The Flower on the Precipice
10. The Bloom of Solitude
Lineup:
Adelchi Romano – Bass
Cristian Lomazzo – Guitars
Rocco Minichiello – Guitars, Vocals
Fabio Parisi – Drums
Record Label: Cult of Parthenope
     


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