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Rifftera - Across the Acheron

Across the Acheron
by Martin "Doomed" Desbois at 17 February 2019, 8:30 AM

RIFFTERA is a melodic death metal band with thrash elements from Vaasa, Finland. Established in 2010,"Across the Acheron" is their second full length album since 2015's "Pitch Black". They also released three demos from 2011 to 2014 and two singles in 2018. It all starts with grandiose march like rhythm…avery epic entry. The drumming is fast and technical .All is set up after a short while and then the machine takes place. Very melodic fast and brutal at the same time. The vocal harmonic choruses adds pretty much to the song. The guitars are rhythm ones mainly. There are many variations from melodic choruses to more aggressive parts. The clean parts are very catchy and addictive. Some solo guitar expression near the end.

Track two, "Two sides of the Story" is pretty fast energetic, with furious drumming and fast guitar rhythms. It breaks into a more mid-tempo to induce clean vocals, then gets back to the action. It sounds like a fast older IN FLAMES. Nothing really original but it's effective. The chorus parts make a strong effect on the song .Melodic guitars are good and doing the job. Nice ascension leading to a near progressive approach. "Eye of the Storm" was previously released as a single. This track has all what it takes: great inspired drumming, excellent harmonic vocals. Some intense guitars and percussion, and a few different time signatures. This is quite a strong song. The end is served in a cool plate of guitar lead.

"Cutthroat Game" has a nice beginning leading to a cybermetal-like ambiance. It's very optimistic feeling in this one, with a nice vibe and raw energy displayed. It uses a standard formula that consists of breakdowns and clean singing. Once I must mention that the vocals are excellent. The synths are lightly used here, along with piano too. "Cry Wolf" is a crunchy Melodeath drifting into Thrash metal frenzy and furious blast beats and breakdowns. They have somehow improves since "Pitch Black". "Warmonger" has lots of synths and drums. The play with guitar textures, from nu-metal to death and thrash metal. The vocals go from harsh ones, growls and screams to some clean choruses that are well performed…quite an enjoyable ride.

"Deepwaters" offers some clean lead guitars, synths, piano, double bass drumming. CHILDREN OF BODOM comes to mind. It's a very catchy song. "Across the Acheron" is a slow paced one, classic metal solo lead. The bass notes sustained at maximum with synths, and catchy riffing. It has a clean Black Metal approach that turns into Progressive metal. Then we are drowned in the ultimate fade out. The force of this album is changing the pace intelligently, playing with three genres that are Thrash, Progressive and Death Metal. The way they make transitions and the vocal harmonies are the strong qualities of this band and album and they reached a new level of songwriting and maturity since their latest album. Yeah!

Songwriting: 8
Originality: 7
Production: 9

4 Star Rating

1. Burning Paradise
2. Two Sides of the Story
3. Eye of the Storm
4. Cutthroat Game
5. Cry Wolf
6. Warmonger
7. Deep Waters
8. Across the Acheron
Jupe Karhu - Bass
Janne Hietala - Guitars , Vocals
Anti Pontinen - Keyboards
Mikko Kuopamaa - Guitars ,Vocals
Ville Harkonen - Drums
Record Label: Inverse Records


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