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Sunless - Urraca CD (album) cover




Tech/Extreme Prog Metal

3.04 | 4 ratings

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siLLy puPPy
3 stars Emerging from the frostbitten metropolis of Minneapolis, MN comes the doom and dread dissonance drenched tech death metal band SUNLESS who finally release their debut album URRACA in 2017 after a promising demo the previous year. SUNLESS is a part of a new breed of techies who have been inspired by the progressive infusion of complex death and black metal laid out by other pioneers such as Gorguts, Deathspell Omega and Portal. Only a mere power trio it's amazing how many jangle chords and drum rolls are present along with a subordinate bass line in the background that stabilizes the full-on doom and dread chaotic effect. SUNLESS have absolutely mastered the chaotic swirling rhythmic effect of Luc Lemay and company with their dazzling time signature run amok tidal wave of riffs gone wild and are relentless in their sonic attack. The band is also quite adept at allowing each instrument to play its part and covering the most sonic ground without stepping on each other's toes.

While the growly vocals are a clear sign of Gorguts worship which is augmented by the technical wizardry of their compositions that remind the listener instantly of Lemay's 2013 masterpiece 'Color Sands,' SUNLESS also add a healthy dose of those evil blackened jangle chords that are so prevalent with Deathspell Omega as well as dishing out the psychedelic and otherworldly tendencies of other dimensional strangeness as heard on Portal albums. While the album whizzes by at a frenetic pace for the most part, there are times of mere contemplation of the hellish world in which the listener has emerged with brutal ambient noise contrasts presumably carried out by way of only the guitar, bass and drums with cymbal action being highly represented on the entire album.

SUNLESS is one of those bands that is a mixed bag right from the beginning. One cannot help but be amazed by the technical prowess delivered by the forceful and majestic soundscapes emerging from this power trio but that bedazzlement is quickly usurped by dismay as the band comes across as a bona fide Gorguts clone band who tucked in a few extra inspirational sources in their sleeves. Overall the band seems to still exist in a nascent tech metal dream world where the ingredients have been thrown into the boiling broth in the cauldron but haven't quite simmered down into a clearcut smorgasbord of metal cuisine that offers a new unheard flavor in the metal universe, however despite the hero worship taking the stage, URRACA is a highly technical yet brilliant balancing act of the elements bestowed upon the listener and will truly knock the socks off any tech metalhead who can't get enough of jittery rhythmic sonic assaults seasoned in oceans of dissonance and Intronaut type sludgery hammering on the eardrums like an eternal jackhammer from hell. Not bad just not quite totally original yet either.

3.5 rounded down

siLLy puPPy | 3/5 |


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