SCULPTURED’S EMBODIMENT IS JUST THIS CLOSE TO BEING A PROG MASTERPIECE
Here’s what I think it wrong with Embodiment, the new album by Sculptured, a progessive death metal semi-supergroup featuring members of Agalloch, Winds, and Age of Silence:
- The clean singing. Vocal duties are shared by Don Anderson and Tom Walling; there’s not a damn thing wrong with their death-growls and I admire the band’s decision to steer clear of auto-tune, but they perpetually sound barely on-key, and, frankly, it can get a little irritating.
- Keyboardist Andy Winter, while generally pretty good, from time-to-time overindulges in that whole organ sound thing, and while I’m sure he means to reference Goblin (whom Sculptured have covered), it can sound a little too jam-bandish, a little too much like Particle for its own good.
Now, here’s what’s right with Embodiment, the new album from Sculptured:
- ABSOLUTELY EVERYTHING ELSE.
Seriously: this is a complex, challenging, just all around good addition to the recent string of awesome progressive metal. Everyone who enjoyed Between the Buried and Me’s Colors needs to check this album out; everyone who likes forward-thinking heavy rock needs to check this album out. Dave Murray’s drums alone are worth the price of a CD (or download or however the hell you get your music these days).
And the production is crystal fucking clear. Seriously. It feels like you’re in the room with the band. Slap on a pair of headphones and you can explore every subtle nuance of this album with no trouble – which is excellent, because it will most certainly take multiple listens to fully grasp something this complex.
It took eight years for Sculptured to record Embodiment, the follow-up to 2000’s Apollo Ends. Let’s hope it’s not 2016 when they put out their next one.
(three and a half out of five horns)