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Vektor Outer Isolation album cover
4.00 | 101 ratings | 6 reviews | 37% 5 stars

Excellent addition to any
prog rock music collection

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Studio Album, released in 2011

Songs / Tracks Listing

1. Cosmic Cortex (10:23)
2. Echoless Chamber (5:15)
3. Dying World (5:19)
4. Tetrastructural Minds (5:21)
5. Venus Project (6:47)
6. Dark Creations, Dead Creators (3:25)
7. Fast Paced Society (6:45)
8. Outer Isolation (8:28)

Total Time 51:43

Line-up / Musicians

- David Disanto / guitar, vocals
- Erik Nelson / guitar
- Frank Chin / bass
- Blake Anderson / drums

Releases information

Artwork: Andrei Bouzikov

CD Heavy Artillery ‎- HA5-5026-2-7 (2011, US)

LP Earache ‎- MOSH464LP (2012, UK) New cover

Digital album

Thanks to LaughingMadcap for the addition
and to projeKct for the last updates
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VEKTOR Outer Isolation ratings distribution

(101 ratings)
Essential: a masterpiece of progressive rock music(37%)
Excellent addition to any prog rock music collection(40%)
Good, but non-essential (15%)
Collectors/fans only (5%)
Poor. Only for completionists (4%)

VEKTOR Outer Isolation reviews

Showing all collaborators reviews and last reviews preview | Show all reviews/ratings

Collaborators/Experts Reviews

Review by EatThatPhonebook
4 stars 7/10

"Outer Isolation" is one of the best Thrash Metal records of the last few years.

One of the most acclaimed Thrash Metal bands of the last few years, Vektor wowed plenty of Metal fans with the 2009 release 'Black Future', and was a tough one to follow. However, 'Outer Isolation' comes pretty darn close, showing that this band has no intent to slow down. This latest release is easily one of the great monsters of modern Thrash Metal, this said by someone who isn't exactly a fan of the new wave of the genre.

'Outer Isolation' from the first seconds of play is an album that loves to experiment with a somewhat spacey theme, not only in the lyrics but also in some futuristic sounding samples of machines and electronics. This is probably what makes the album very original sounding. But 'Outer Isolation' is also extremely violent, thrashy, in your face, and fiercely technical. Each one of these songs is extremely complex and flows in such a way that maximum attention is required. In one song, it feels like the band is constantly throwing at you different riffs, all of them pretty much face melting. The technical side of the band is quite impressive, each musician is incredibly skilled, to the point that saying this is Technical Thrash Metal is very much accurate.

Even after repeated listens, however, many parts here are very hard to follow, and everything passes by quite quickly, and by the end of the song, you won't remember all of the things happened. It gets almost frustrating at times, but knowing that every single note of a song was enjoyable ends up compensating the frustration somehow.

Examples of such sort of tracks are all over the place, starting from the ten minute opener 'Cosmic Vortex', mixing space ambience with fierce Thrash and tons of time changes. The two following song 'Echoless Chamber' and 'Dying World' are not only extremely fun to listen to but also have excellent ideas and riffs within them, maintaining that technical feel in every note. 'Tetrastructural Minds' and 'Fast Paced Society' seem to be not only two of the best pieces of the album but also the easier ones to get into, while the more complex songs 'Venus Project' and the title track actually feature more variety in the sound, both of them being more open towards doing slower moments or strange, low toned vocals.

An album very hard to get into, but when it reveals itself it's a wonderful joy of a Thrash Metal record, one of the best of that genre of the last few years. Essential listening for Thrash Metal fans.

Review by Conor Fynes
4 stars 'Outer Isolation' - Vektor (8/10)

Vektor are one of those bands that have been inspiring excitement since they first began releasing music. With vicious musicianship, complex composition and a futuristic sci-fi theme, Vektor recall the glory days of Voivod. Although I rarely call myself a fan of thrash metal, I fully admit that I jumped on the fan bandwagon shortly after hearing their debut, 'Black Future'. 'Outer Isolation' is now the band's second full-length effort, and here they have emphasized some of the things I liked so much about the original, namely their technicality and progressive approach. Sure enough, Vektor have proven that they aren't simply a one-album wonder anymore.

Voivod, Watchtower, and Coroner are all bands that pop into mind when listening to Vektor. As part of this thrash revival movement that's been going on over the past couple of years, Vektor have chosen to represent the technical end of the genre. Although the music here can be just as fast as your typical Slayer song, there is alot more going on in terms of musicianship. With particular regards to the guitar work, there is an impressive attention to keeping things complex. Best of all, the band sacrifices none of their intensity as a result. What we have ultimately is a band manages to take the thrash aggression and marry it perfectly with progressive ambition.

A staple of Vektor's sound has always been the hear-it-to-believe-it voice of frontman David DiSanto. His vocals usually take one of two forms; either a black metal rasp, or an ear- piercing falsetto. The raspy vocals generally take up most of the time, but it's when DiSanto uses his range where it becomes easy to be impressed. The vocals this time around do not have the same shock value as they did on 'Black Future', and though DiSanto attempts to broaden the scope of his vocals with some half-hearted cleans, part of what made DiSanto's vocals so intense on the debut was that they were fresh. Here, the vocals are still spot-on and impressive, but it's largely the same tricks that were pulled with the debut.

'Outer Isolation's musical complexity and technical approach to thrash metal is a bold and consistently impressive achievement. Although it may not be as instantly exciting as 'Black Future', it's definitely a musical improvement over the predecessor, sharpening their musical skills and upping the techy direction to new extremes. If there are any complaints, it would be that each of the songs sound too much alike; although each is immaculately performed and brilliantly composed, the speed and intensity feels somewhat like deja vu by the time this album is over. Regardless, I think the most important thing here is that Vektor cannot be considered anymore to be a band who put out one great album, but rather an act dedicated to releasing consistently impressive music. Without a doubt, this is one of the greatest thrash albums of the new millennium.

Review by Prog Sothoth
COLLABORATOR Honorary Collaborator
4 stars Thrash has always been considered one of the more stringent sub-genres of metal when it comes to trademarks, thus you don't see a whole slew of thrash bands qualifying as "progressive". That being said, Vektor tosses constraints to the wind and successfully outclasses the vast majority of the numerous thrash revival bands by fully embracing progressive aspects utilized in particular by Voivod (just look at the band's logo to see the obvious influence), certain German thrash bands and some of the more technical early death metal acts while somehow residing within the zones of what would constitute a thrash metal band. The combination of these elements and quality songwriting merge admirably enough to earn respect as one of the more original recently formed extreme metal bands out there whose content is worth numerous repeated listens.

I mention 'quality songwriting' because it's something a decent portion of the more technically astute can sometimes forget when writing music. So much focus and attention is awarded to fleet-fingered wizardry and machine gun drumming that more than a few acts to my ears sound like little more than a bunch of arpeggio scales and sweeps played at breakneck speed over consistent blast-beats. That gets old real fast, possibly somewhere around the second song or so. This album, though, is chock full of fine riffs and song structures that don't feel disjointed, random or aimless. The riffs themselves pinball between consonant and dissonant chord progressions that retain a sort of catchy melodic pattern, much like Voivod circa Killing Technology, with an added flair of both progression and aggression, in that blast beats do appear on occasion, but really don't make up the basis for the album's tempo, which leans towards Slayer-esque pacing (I know, what a strange term).

Production-wise, Outer Isolation is mixed expertly in retaining a sci-fi mood that doesn't sterilize the overall sound of the instruments, but focuses more on clarity than heaviness, which in this case works in providing a cold clinical sound while upholding an organic flair to the instrumentation. Guitar solos jut in and out on occasion, and while impressive enough, remain secondary to the rhythm progressions themselves, which can be busy as all hell at times and yet memorable.

Vocally we're dealing with a guy who seems determined to lose his capacity to speak before he reaches his inevitable mid-life crisis. It's basically a throat shredding rasp that possesses some black elements, but actually resembles something more akin to the German thrash scene, such as Destruction's album The Antichrist or possibly a younger male sibling to Sabine from Holy Moses. Screechy, but not to ridiculous levels that would turn off more straightforward thrash metal fans. He's not my favorite vocalist for sure, but it somehow fits well with the music, in which the guitars carry the melody while the vocals add another layer of rhythm.

You know, when I first heard of the band and saw their logo, I almost wrote them off before even giving them a chance as some Voivod ripoff. Then I reminded myself how much I dig Voivod, and how there's plenty of worse acts to emulate, so I gave Vektor a shot and was fully impressed at how original this group resounded. They actually have obtained a presence of their own by harnessing some influences and melding them into something new while enhancing their sound by focusing moreso on songcraft than histrionics. Within the confines of a genre so well defines by 80's standards, that's saying something.

Review by siLLy puPPy
4 stars VEKTOR caught the attention of the metal world with their brilliant debut 'Black Future' which incorporated thrash metal at its most energetic and added a whole bunch of twists and turns all dressed up with Voivod inspired science fiction themes. On their second full release (i'm not counting Demolition) they show they aren't just a one album band and that they have plenty of tricks up their sleeves and more energy to unleash at breakneck speeds while taking full command of the progressive moodswings. OUTER ISOLATION is another brilliant album that doesn't really differ substantially from the debut.

The style is exactly what you would expect and VEKTOR simply gives more of what they did so well the first time around. We are treated to the dual guitar onslaught of proggy chord and tempo changes while David DiSanto shrieks his unique vocal hybrid that combines the operatic aspects of traditional metal with the shrieks and growls associated with black and death metal. A vocal effect that is very effective with this kind of intensity. Once again this second winner falls short of being in the category of masterpiece, but definitely fits the bill of an extremely solid release that rewards multiple listens and satisfies that extreme tech metal itch time and time again.

Review by UMUR
SPECIAL COLLABORATOR Honorary Collaborator
4 stars "Outer Isolation" is the 2nd full-length studio album by US thrash metal act Vektor. The album was released through Heavy Artillery Records in November 2011. It's the follow up to the critically acclaimed "Black Future (2009)", which really put Vektor's name on the map. Vektor were formed under the Locrian monicker in 2003 but changed their name to Vektor in 2004. They released the "Demolition" demo album in 2006, which is often mistakenly considered their debut album. Like the case was on "Black Future (2009)", several tracks from "Demolition (2006)" have been re-arranged and re-recorded for "Outer Isolation". More specifically "Fast Paced Society", "Venus Project", and "Tetrastructural Minds".

Stylistically the music on "Outer Isolation" more or less continues where "Black Future (2009)" left off. It's technical/progressive thrash metal with sci-fi themed lyrics and imagery. Vektor are strongly influenced by Voivod, but artists like Destruction and late era-Death also come to mind. So the music features a good balance between old school raw thrash metal and more sophisticated technical/progressive elements. The vocals are high pitched screaming which remind me of a higher pitched Chuck Schuldiner (Death) on "The Sound of Perseverance (1998)". That means effect laden and processed to the point where they are bordering inhuman territory.

The 8 tracks on the 51:43 minutes long album are all well written, intriguing, and powerful metal tracks, and while Vektor aren't completely there yet, they are well on their way to creating a unigue musical style. Sometimes their adventurous songwriting takes them in slightly too many directions, and if I have to mention one small issue it would be that the tracks could have prospered from a few more repeated hooklines. When Vektor incorporate more instant cathiness to their music like they do on for example "Echoless Chamber", they show promise of a more compact and memorable future direction, that could get them far.

"Outer Isolation" features a powerful and raw, yet detailed and clear sound production, which brings out the best in the music. So upon conclusion this is a great sophomore album by Vektor. There's been development since "Black Future (2009)" but not too much development (which means there is still continuety of sound and style), and "Outer Isolation" very much feels like the natural successor to the debut. As mentioned above I still feel Vektor haven't completely found their "sound" yet, and they are clearly still in a development phase. Sometimes that's the phase of an artist's career, where they produce the most interesting material, but sometimes it's just part of the journey towards something greater. In that regard it'll be interesting to see after more album releases from Vektor where "Outer Isolation" places itself in the band's discography. A 4 star (80%) rating is deserved.

(Originally posted on Metal Music Archives)

Latest members reviews

4 stars After an already promising first strike, Vektor make another step forward with the release of their second professional full length output. The band focuses even more on their technical qualities and a strong progressive touch in their music that have some similarities to many famous progressiv ... (read more)

Report this review (#808935) | Posted by kluseba | Thursday, August 23, 2012 | Review Permanlink

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