In 2016, I received an album titled Vasilisa, made by some Germans called Chaosbay. I listened to it at a time when I had no appetite for music and no great hope. As the songs went by, my interest increased considerably.
Their style could be described as a mix of progressive metal along with more current elements such as the use of the guitar in a percussive mode (djent). The vocals alternate between clean and growls, but the latter only when it is needed for emphasis. The sound is melodic and brutal and bombastic–but it always maintains a musical unity and a clear and concise direction. The song lengths typically don’t exceed seven minutes, with a few notable exceptions.
Four years have passed since my first encounter with these Germans, and today I have the pleasure of feeding my ears with their new production, entitled Asylum.
From the first notes, we realize that we are in a concept album, which mainly addresses current global issues such as racism and migration. The titles confirm that.
Criticism of the evils that afflict today’s world is presented through recurring phrases and melodies.
“If there is a God, how could this happen? If there is a God, we don’t need a devil…”.
Musically, the album touches on a variety of styles: from the brutality of “D.O.A. (Dead On Arrival)” to the smoothness of “Soldiers,” which works (in context) as a ballad, although with building intensity.
Throughout the album, Chaosbay manages to communicate with simplicity combined with force. They prove that it is not necessary to shred the proceedings with a flood of notes, riffs, and scales to remain interesting. The musical “muscles” of each member are there, but contained, moderate, ready to attack (if necessary)–but only when NECESSARY.
I am sick of bands that make their records a showcase of how fast they can play, of how well they’ve mastered their instruments. The technique must be at the service of a congruent musical proposal, tight and solid and with a purpose–not the other way around.
With Chaosbay, the musical execution is impeccable, without a doubt. I can’t find a moment where I could criticize the musicians’ abilities.
Production-wise (recording, mixing, and mastering), Asylum is excellent. In some passages (very few), the sound is a bit saturated for my taste. But in general, it does not impede the listening enjoyment.
In the end, I highly recommend this album to all those who long for those times when music was an end and not a means to pretend and show off.
Chaosbay is a band that just could conquer our beloved music world if time permits, and with Asylum, they get a little closer to the goal.
“If there is a God, we are the weapon.”
1 Enjoy The Rise
5 Limbus Inn
7 Criminals & Sons
8 The Lyin’ King
9 Heavenly Island (Epilogue)
CHAOSBAY’s second album will be released September 18th, 2020 via Timezone Records and recordJet. Preorder the album here: https://linktr.ee/chaosbay
Visit the band: http://chaosbay.com/
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