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Reveal – Flystrips

by Jose Macall at 24 April 2017, 10:53 AM

Sometimes when listening to an album, you find that it grows on you. What you initially experience is not the final conclusion you reach. Perception varies and what something starts out as is not what it ends up being. The change comes unexpectedly, not unlike your own slowly warping body after being cursed by an evil old witch. My point is that the first impressions aren’t always the lasting ones. Enter: REVEAL!

“Flystrips” is an album that comes off as being a difficult listen initially. Its grainy production values, cavernous muted vocals, and sporadic feedback all create a virtual mine field of audio. It’s dissonant and hostile to the listener. These things can be off-putting, much like the ominous incantation of a gnarled elderly face inflicting you with bad fortune.
Past the initial impression however, lies something much deeper and more interesting. Not unlike the black arts. It’s sinister and engrossing the longer it goes. There are a lot of great riffs throughout this album and not sticking around for the ride would be a great disappointment. It’s hard to pin down exactly where in the Metal panoply this release goes. It’s part Black Metal, part early Thrash influenced almost Hardcore sounding, and part old-school Death Metal. There’s elements of everything even though this isn’t an incredibly complex or multilayered album. There are just some great heavy tunes that charge onward throughout. At times I felt like Surf-Rock was going to make an appearance with the way the songs are played but there was always that return to a solid heavy riff or a catchy lead that carried the day.

Though the lower production values could be a turn off, this did sound like something straight out of the 80’s and I can appreciate that. Was this done for the nostalgia or atmosphere? I can’t say, but for me, it quickly became a non-factor because the music itself is very raw and fitting. Sure the snares were really loud and abrasive, sure there was just a bit too much feedback, sure the vocals sound hoarse and guttural, but a loud racket is part of the Metal experience. Regardless of these things however, I found myself head banging to the wicked guitar work, the crushing thumping bass, the ominous melodies, and existential dread from knowing an ancient sorceress has bedeviled me with a spell that is slowly turning me into a horse all because I laughed at her.

While listening to this I was reminded of bands like CELTIC FROST, VENOM, SLAUGHTER (The Canadian one, not the Hair Metal wussy one), and MAUSOLEUM. There’s enough of an old-school feel to this one that fans of simple thumping extreme music will find a lot to enjoy.  Standout tracks for me were ”Comes Crashing Down” and “Old Speckled One” (Funny they should sing about an old speckled one because it just happens to be that an old speckled lady was the one who pointed her withered, arthritic hand at me and recited some kind of mystery incantation at me). I ended up enjoying my venture into “Flystrips”. It’s like uncovering an ancient crypt that seems laden with traps but holds riches inside its darkened depths. It’s foreboding and harsh up front, but sticking with it rewards the listener with a crushingly heavy release. REVEAL plays the type of malevolent music that wants one to herald in the apocalypse and scream “THE END IS NEIGH!” (I mean nigh, damnit! Oh no, the curse…)

Songwriting: 7
Originality: 7
Memorability: 7
Production: 6

3 Star Rating

1. I Am Going To Eat You
2. Leopard Cunt
3. Heart
4. Cadmium
5. Comes Crashing Down
6. Stale Smoke
7. Old Speckled One
8. Tame Your Neighborhood (With Knives) 
Vuisiudad -Bass
Temple - Drums
Spine - Guitars
Ghost - Vocals
Record Label: Sepulchral Voice


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Edited 05 February 2023

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