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Seris - Rises CD (album) cover




Progressive Metal

4.00 | 1 ratings

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4 stars Exotic metal band rising

Seris is a very cool progressive band whose sound stands out amongst many of their peers in prog metal. Hailing from Denver, they have been together since 2009 and their debut full length album "Rises" was released in 2013.

Though I'm no metal expert I've heard enough repetition amongst bands that Seris immediately jumped out at me as something pleasantly different. Their sound is indeed very heavy, sometimes relentlessly so, but it is not off-putting to the average rock fan. They want to appeal to fans outside of the metal scene and have three weapons to do so. They have mined a very unique sound that takes a Tool-esque heaviness and makes it groove! For those who love the technical side the musicians are experimenting with polymetric music, which is the practice of employing different time signatures on top of one another, giving the music a fascinating depth and substance. It takes your brain a few listens to truly appreciate what the guys are doing in this regard. I wanted to share a quick self-description of their sound along with a good summary line from another critic:

"Taking elements of dark and artistic progressive rock and adding a very deliberate odd-time metal feel serves as their musical foundation. Fusing this progressive edge with a powerful and haunting female voice distinctly separates this unique ensemble from the rest." -Seris

"The staccato interplay of guitar and bass, Ms. Olivia's vocal stylings, the complex and yet lineal percussion. Tribal technical metal seems to sum up the style of music Seris creates." -Don Kinney

The final piece of the Seris puzzle is vocalist/lyricist Olivia whom I first heard in her previous band Choke the Word. Make no mistake. While Choke were a decent band, Seris is on another level completely. Olivia's vocals are adept and exotic, unique and occasionally veering into extreme. She brings a different sheen to the finish of the music. I wouldn't call it Gothic exactly although there is an element of that. Nor does she really attempt to "soften" the sound as do some bands which have a female vocalist. Her voice goes wherever the music does with great intensity; it has a burning quality and sometimes an almost "out of body" feel. A bit like the climax of "I think I'm Paranoid" when Shirley Manson does that really sinister, deeper vocal...though Olivia is a more interesting vocalist to be sure. It's often fascinating to hear how this voice compliments what is very aggressive music. Sometimes the sound can get a bit mechanical despite their efforts, and I find myself wishing for some piano or keys and more melodic soft passages for contrast. Then again, I don't think this band wants to be a Nightwish type band and I don't blame them. They are off on their own path.

Light and shade, eerie guitar wells, vicious drumming, dramatic vocals. Beckman and Jepsen are a howl to listen to...they lock into these grooves which are just amazing and yet both the guitar lead work and the drum fills manage to stand out in style and form. With or without the variable time meters and technical aspects of what they are doing, they manage to keep all the crunch in the sound that I love. "Rises" is an exciting new prog-metal entry on PA, especially those who love heavy riffs with female vocals.

Finnforest | 4/5 |


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