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The Burden Remains - Fragments

The Burden Remains
by Matt Coe at 24 April 2014, 9:58 AM

The Swiss Hard Rock and Metal scene has produced a lot of gems through the years – influential artists such as CELTIC FROST, CORONER, and to a lesser extent but for many a gateway band in the early 80’s KROKUS. The following quartet THE BURDEN REMAINS also call Switzerland their home, and the band has been together for almost 14 years in one form or another – as they spent 11 years from 2000-2011 as the Thrash band CIDERAID. “Fragments” is the second full-length from the newly named THE BURDEN REMAINS, and I will tell you this 8 song effort isn’t your run of the mill Progressive or Thrash release.

The first difference lies in the versatile and emotional vocal delivery from bassist Tommy Schweizer. He is not a typical singer – the subtleties in terms of his clean melodies seem more in line with a doom vocalist like Robert Lowe, while the high screams and sustained note holding can be reminiscent of classic Warrel Dane. His phrasing and throat control make the shape shifting “Among the Shards” an early favorite, one that begins in a discordant Progressive fashion before the up tempo Thrash burners take over during the verses.

Secondly, the foursome know how to perform sections intuitively to build the impact, and also know when it’s best to let the bass pop or drumming shine, beyond the normal virtuoso guitar harmonies and lead breaks. “A Thousand Lives” is the ultimate rhythm workout during the opening strains – and the locked and loaded groove continues throughout the progressive, dynamic changes of the song. Musically the band have more of a mixture of NEVERMORE and FAITH NO MORE montage to their sound- not as Thrashy as their social media influences may claim. The 8:46 “Keep to the Script” has a little Atmospheric Black touch during some of the faster trilling instrumental sections, while the drumming is slow and tribal, causing the body to sway back and forth like a ship navigating storm clouds. THE BURDEN REMAINS also flex a little TESTAMENT muscle during another favorite “I, Stillborn” – a lot of the riff choices and bottom end outlook bringing “Practice What You Preach” to the forefront of my brain.

At 43 minutes, “Fragments” gives the listener plenty to absorb without feeling information overload. This band have a lot of great action and interesting riff/ part combinations, so those into Pogressive oriented Power/Thrash will like this more so than your straightforward bruise and bash effort.


4 Star Rating

1. GC and I Beheld the Strings
2. Among the Shards
3. A Thousand Lives
4. Keep to the Script
5. Wander the Desert
6. Horror Vacui
7. I, Stillborn
8. Gover the Sleepers
Tommy Schweizer – Vocals / Bass
Thomas Jenny – Guitar
Philippe Aebischer – Guitar
Silvan Mangold – Drums
Record Label: Czar Of Crickets Productions


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Edited 25 September 2022

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