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Mekong Delta - Lurking Fear CD (album) cover

LURKING FEAR

Mekong Delta

 

Tech/Extreme Prog Metal

3.42 | 25 ratings

From Progarchives.com, the ultimate progressive rock music website

Time Signature
4 stars Mekong Delta, in my book, belongs in the same group of thrash metal bands as Flotsam & Jetsam, Voivod, and Watchtower, Invocator, and Unleashed Power - you know progressive and technical thrash metal artists whose compositions are full of twists and turns, who are not afraid to use other chords than your typical power chords, and who have really paid attention to compositional detail, such that you can easily lose yourself in a song. And, what I really like about such technical and progressive thrash metal bands is that they tend to actually sound very different.

Anyway, with "Lurking Fear" there can be no doubt that Mekong Delta are a technically daring band who are not afraid to appeal to the thinking man of metal (or thinking person - metal's for women, too, ya know). The very first track, "Society in Dissolution" (song title which is so thrash it hurts), explodes into a series of dissonant chords followed by uptempo drumming and a flury of technical riffage and odd time signature and strangely flowing spacy vocals and jazzy guitar solos. That pretty much sets the tone for the rest of the album, which offers technical and arty thrash metal with influences from power metal, progressive rock (I think that some of the vocal harmonies sound a bit like 60s and 70s era Yes), jazz fusion, alternative rock, 80s new wave and what not - and some tracks, like "Allegro Furioso", "Moderato" and "Allegro" (all of which are based on actual symphonic pieces) even have symphonic elements in them.

There aren't any weak tracks as such on the album, but stand-out tracks "Society in Dissolution", "Allegro Furioso", "Rules of Corruption" (which, along with the melodic "Ratters" is one of the straightest of the album), and "Moderato" and "Allegro".

There is a lot going on musically on this album, which means that it is also wonderfully challenging to listen to for the trained ear, but I think that maybe there is a lot to take in for the newly initiated into the world of technical and progressive metal, who should perhaps either start with the likes of Queensr˙che, Fates Warning and Dream Theater before venturing into the world of progressive thrash metal wher the degree of intenseness is considerably higher, or perhaps take in "Lurking Fear" one track at the time. Personally, I think this is a release of high quality, and, because of all the details, there is always something new to discover upon every listen.

The sound is very polished, but that's if fine, because then no details will be drowned out. I think that, perhaps the drums have too much reverb to them, and a more crisp sound would perhaps have been better.

I think that fans of Watchtower and Voivod will like this album a lot; I'd certainly recommend it to fans of progressive and technical thrash metal, and I think that fans of progressive and technical death metal like Atheist, Cynic, Obscura, Pestilence, Gorguts etc. may also like it.

(review originally posted on metalmusicarchives.com and progfreak.com)

Time Signature | 4/5 |

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