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Fleshgod Apocalypse - Oracles CD (album) cover

ORACLES

Fleshgod Apocalypse

 

Tech/Extreme Prog Metal

3.69 | 19 ratings

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Insin
3 stars Not sure why FGA is on the site. They are a technical death metal band, though they're more known for writing symphonic death metal. Oracles is their debut album, and a precursor to their more signature symphonic sound. A brief 37 minutes of tech death with the occasional classical-inspired interlude, it is a fairly average album.

The symphonic and classical elements are present on this album in minimal quantities, and never played simultaneously or layered over the main focus ? metal. The full synthesis of the two contrasting styles doesn't happen until the second album, Agony. Here, they only seem to experiment with classical, and I get the impression that they didn't know how to incorporate it into their songs, or even if they wanted to. It was an indicator of what they would become, but in reference to only this album, the classical presence seems quirky and out of place. The beautiful symphonic flourishes bizarrely contrast the brutal death metal, with no skillful transition between the two and no reason for the former to exist. Despite its value as an interlude to break up the tech death, the symphonic parts serve no other musical purpose other than to confuse the listener.

The tech death is, to reiterate, the main focus of the album ? and it's good, but nothing really out of the ordinary. The bass is hardly audible for the most part, besides the rare, impressive break. The drums are incredibly solid, tying everything together. The vocals are somewhat lacking, without the extra viciousness that makes for great death growling ? now and then, Paoli hits a scream that sounds eerily like Cannibal Corpse's vocalist, but usually his voice is only slightly harsher than Dethklok's "Nathan Explosion." Fortunately, the annoying clean vocals that became more prevalent in later releases are not present on Oracles ? to put it bluntly, they suck. Few of the album's riffs are memorable, but the guitarist produces the occasional well-performed, short lead. The lyrics deal with anti-religion, and the band tries to sound smart by using plenty of big words, obviously forgetting that no one can understand what they're saying anyway... but then there's the excruciatingly stereotypical lines "Everybody kill! Kill... suffer!" from Infection of the White Throne.

Oracles is a more straightforward tech death release, as opposed to Agony, the album that showcases FGA's trademark, more symphonic sound. Agony is preferably the album to start with; if you don't like the classical elements, come back to this.

Insin | 3/5 |

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