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The Faceless - Planetary Duality  CD (album) cover

PLANETARY DUALITY

The Faceless

 

Tech/Extreme Prog Metal

3.66 | 14 ratings

From Progarchives.com, the ultimate progressive rock music website

UMUR
Special Collaborator
Honorary Collaborator
4 stars Planetary Duality is the second full-length studio album by American tech death metal act The Faceless. The album was released on the 11th of November 2008 through Sumerian Records ( released by Lifeforce Records on the 23th of February 2009) and is produced by guitarist/ clean vocalist Micheal Keene. Drummer Lyle Cooper has been added to the lineup since the debut album Akeldama (2006) but the rest of the lineup from that album remains. I was pretty impressed with Akeldama when I listened to it and wrote my review but it really didn´t suit my personal taste much at the time so I was a bit reluctant to purchase Planetary Duality. But boy have my doubts been put to shame.

The music is technical death metal. It´s very brutal but actually melodic as well in glimpses. The guitar riffs are sharp and fast with lots of precise and technically complex drumming to go along. The vocals are mostly deep brutal growls ( a few higher pitched too) but there are occasional clean/ vocoder vocals which is great for the variation on the album. One of my favorite features on the album are the many melodic guitar solos though. Very skillfully executed and an oasis of beauty in the midst of brutal death metal.

The album starts with the short and brutal Prison Born and I was not convinced right away. I enjoy it greatly now though. My interest increased greatly with the second song The Ancient Covenant though. That song is simply amazing tech death metal. Powerful and fast with some great guitar motifs. Shape Shifters is a short instrumental break before Coldy Calculated Design begins and we´re once again treated with a fast and technical death metal track. Xeno Christ is a bit different and heavier but still with faster parts. Great varied song that one. Sons of Belial is the song with most obvious use of clean vocals even though those vocals actually only occur twice in the song and only for a few seconds at a time. I didn´t care much for the clean vocals the first many times I listened to the album but I´ve come to appreciate them greatly the more I´ve listened to the album. Legion of the Serpent is next and it´s the most melodic song on the album. It´s a great song and very important for the diversity of the album. Planetary Duality I : Hideous Revelation is an intro to Planetary Duality II : A Prophecies Fruition. The short track has some sci-fi samples which really creates the right atmopshere before the going into Planetary Duality II : A Prophecies Fruition which is another excellent tech death metal track.

The musicianship is outstanding. This is very complex and demanding music and The Faceless is very tight. A great performance. If you crave airtight musicianship look no further.

The production is excellent. Clean and sharp as the genre demands. Very enjoyable.

My review should pretty much reveal my excitement about Planetary Duality, but it will still have to pass the test of time, for me to reward it with a 5 star rating. This album is a very likely candidate for the masterpiece rating though and I will definitely re-consider my BIG 4 star rating in the future. This is one of the best tech death metal albums I´ve heard in years and firmly places The Faceless in today´s tech death metal elite. Planetary Duality is a must hear IMO. Very recommendable to fans of the genre.

UMUR | 4/5 |

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