A new release by the Singaporean RUDRA is always a reason to celebrate. After all, they have been around for twenty five years, strewing the Far East Metal soundscapes with masterpieces bearing their signature Folk-influenced Black/Death Metal. With seven studio albums under their belt, they have now come up with their highly anticipated eighth album, "Enemy of Duality".
The band dub their style Vedic Metal, incorporating themes based on the Vedas, the ancient Hindu body of knowledge and wisdom written thousands of years ago in the Sanskrit language. RUDRA tell the tale with a masterful blend of heavy riffs and varied rhythms, melding elements of Indian Folk with authentic instruments and clean Indian-style ululating female vocals. The guys are loyal to their line of presentation with rich production that highlights all their strength, and there are many of these. There are some repetitive motifs going through the entire album, giving it a sense of a complete whole without sounding shabby or forced and with a great sense of melody, too. "Abating the Firebrand" starts with a droning sitar and melancholic chanting in Sanskrit accompanied by a convincing guitar lead, followed by a strong riff and enchanting rhythm. The blast beats are soon to follow. The varying rhythms keep the music interesting, which is characteristic of the entire album. There are quite a few bands dedicated to specific ancient philosophies and mythologies, such as MELECHESH, KARTIKEYA and ORPHANED LAND, and RUDRA belong rightfully in that elite league of fine acts. "Perception Apparent" starts with a gloomy flute that turns into a dark whirlwind of heavy riffs and bludgeoning drumming. There are nice passages of clean vocals in here, contributing the magical atmosphere backed by the passionate instrumentation. The fierce assault never stops in the following tracks. "Root of Misapprehension" follows the same line and opens with Indian instrumentals. The complex composition is rather digestible thanks to the catchy hooks. "Hermit in Nididhyasana" begins with chanting female vocals, which is interwoven tastefully throughout the track in the right places. The album closes with "Ancient Fourth," a grandiose epos clocking over 9 minutes to complement the sweeping experience of this wonderful album.
All this amounts to yet another masterpiece by this folks that will leave you wanting for more. This album is a must for Oriental Metal fans.