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Volcandra – Into The Azure

Into The Azure
by Brian “Metal” Morton at 27 February 2020, 3:49 PM

Hailing from my hometown of Louisville, Ky, comes VOLCANDRA and their freshman album “Into The Azure”. This album is chock full of fantastic riffs played by River Jordan and Jamie Demar on the guitars. The drumming by Mike Hargrave is phenomenal as well as the bass being played by Dyer Keathley. Also this album has some of the best vocals from Dave Palenske, in which I would describe as a cross between Melodic Blackened Death Metal mixed with a hint of Metalcore. Some of the bands influences are OPETH, BEHEMOTH and DEAFHEAVEN and you can really hear the influence on the album. This album is a must if you are a fan of well written and produced Blackened Death Metal.

Up first on the album is the hard hitting and very impressive song “Betruger”. This song absolutely SLAPS! If you want a song to get stuck in your head, this is it for sure. The line “I Know The Devil Is real, I Built His Cage”, got stuck in my head for days after hearing it for the first time. The second song on the album is another banger called “Plains Of Despair”. On this song I would have to say that the drums are what really stick out to me. The drum work is basically seamless and just flows perfectly with the rest of the band.

The vocals are impeccable on this track as well. What’s crazy is that this band is only a little over a year old and they sound like they have been putting out music together for at least a decade. The title track “Into The Azure” is one song where I think the guitarists really shine through as well as the bass. They deliver a tumultuous performance on this song. You can also really hear the Black Metal side of the band breaking out at certain points which is amazing. “Veracity” in the beginning is where the melodic side comes out for sure. But don’t let that fool you because it only gets heavier and heavier from the beginning. This song is one of the more evil sounding songs in my opinion.

Fringe Of The Earth” is where you can really hear that hint of Metalcore I was talking about. It adds a whole new depth to the album which is fantastic and has some really beautifully written melodic breaks. “The Weight Of Darkness” is another one that will absolutely tear your ear drums to shreds. This song has made it to my daily playlist and it really gets your heart pumping. I have definitely found myself screaming along to this song while I’m driving around a few times. The final song on the album is “The Burning Mountain” and I will be damned if this wasn’t one of the most hard hitting endings to an album I have heard recently. If anything they decided to go all out on the last track and they kill it. From the first note to the last it had me entranced and banging my head.

This album is one of the best freshman albums I have ever heard and I recommend, no I demand you all go buy a copy. You can thank me later for the suggestion. I think given more time, this band will one day be playing all the major festivals and in one of your favourite playlists. I cannot stress enough how much this album kicks ass. The album will be released on February 28th 2020.

Songwriting: 10
Originality: 10
Memorability: 10
Production: 10

5 Star Rating

1. Betruger
2. Plains Of Despair
3. Into The Azure
4. Veracity
5. Fringe Of The Earth
6. The Weight Of Darkness
7. The Burning Mountain
Dave Palenske – Vocals
River Jordan – Guitar
Jamie Demar – Guitar
Dyer Keathley – Bass
Mike Hargrave – Drums
Record Label: Independent


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Edited 04 October 2022

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