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Ultima – Meritamun

by Dave "That Metal Guy" Campbell at 13 December 2019, 8:21 AM

ULTIMA is a Progressive/Djent Metal band based out of Italy. On October 18, 2019, they released their debut EP titled “Meritamun,” which contains four tracks. These Prog/Djent/Core mashups have become quite popular lately, with the genre spearheaded by bands from France like NOVELISTS and KADINJA. It creates a very unique and individualized sound that often demands a lot from the musicians.

“Epicenter of Agony” opens the album, with thick and heavy accents, and an ever-changing meter. Vocals are harsh at first, and then clean in the choruses. The guitars do a nice job of shifting throughout, and showcasing some real skill. I hear a little amateur quality to the songwriting, but that is to be expected by this fledgling band and their first EP release. “Malasomni” is a little longer, opening with some clean guitars and a darker, slower pace, which really allows those Djenty guitar accents to shine. The vocals are intense and raging. At one point they build into a cadence that is steady and rhythmic. The guitar solo is fantastic. An ambient passage around the 2/3 mark creates a whole other sound.

“Inadequate” opens with some heavy chugging in the guitars. The vocals rage over top, almost sounding like DeathCore. The clean vocals in the chorus sound just a bit off when compared to the rest of the song. “Iconoclasm” closes the four-track EP. It opens slowly, with clean guitars that echo, along with some electronica. The vocals and clean and easy at first. The guitar passage that follows almost sound like something PLINI would do. Then comes the heavy accented guitars and harsh vocals. The harmonized clean vocals bring another element to the table. This song has a fairly easy going atmosphere compared to some of the others and shows some real skill in songwriting.

Overall, this was a fairly easy listening album and on par with what others are doing in the genre. As I mentioned, it just sound a little amateur, but this is the band’s debut release, so that is to be expected. I hear some great potential in the band. They have the Progressive timing side of things down, they just need some improvement in the melody department, and in transitions from passage to passage. It’s a good first effort.

Songwriting: 7
Musicianship: 8
Memorability: 7
Production: 7

3 Star Rating

1. Epicenter of Agony
2. Malasomni
3. Inadequate
4. Iconoclasm
Matteo Toffanin – Vocals
Patrik Roncolato "Trizio" – Guitar, Electronics
Massimo Forestan – Guitar
Matteo Polonio – Bass, Walls
Jacopo Ceretta – Drums
Record Label: Independent


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