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Behold...The Arctopus - Horrorscension CD (album) cover

HORRORSCENSION

Behold...The Arctopus

 

Tech/Extreme Prog Metal

3.08 | 25 ratings

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Insin
1 stars Behold the Arctopus has been described as "soulless technical death metal," and as their second album Horrorscension opens with Disintegore, this proves to be true. It's a song that feels like an intro or an overture, as if at any second it will break into a recognizable song structure, into a flowing work of progressive genius. But it doesn't? And the whole album is like this.

Horrorscension is ever more flat and pointless than Behold the Arctopus's first album, Skullgrid. Any actual appeal possessed by their debut has degenerated into a complete disregard for good songwriting. There is nothing on here besides bland, mindless tech death, and almost never is there a change in pace, the usage of dynamics, nothing on here that makes the music actually enjoyable. It gets really annoying to listen to after a while, the riffs and solos utterly forgettable and a lack of vocals (not that I have a problem with instrumentals) adding to the mechanical, robotic emotionlessness of Horrorscension.

Behold the Arctopus has even crafted a ten minute song, Annihilvore, to finish off the album. Normally I would refer to this as an "epic closer," but there is nothing epic about this. They could have cut it in half to no loss. Or gotten rid of it completely. Or, better yet, never written the album to begin with. Like the rest of Horrorscension, it goes absolutely nowhere, without structure and filled with pointless technicality. There is no evolution in any of these songs. Nothing interesting happens.

There are rare deviations from this lack of direction ? Horrorsentience slows down at the end; Deluge of Sores has a touch of actual feeling (I use the word lightly), perhaps due to its slightly upbeat riffing, and is the only song that doesn't make me want to peel my fingernails off one by one (these two minor variations are not exactly saving graces). Another thing that doesn't entirely suck is the musicianship. Songs like these have only one purpose: to show off the band members' skills, and they do, each performance sounding tight. It's not like these are a bunch of inexperienced kids who are trying to cover a highly technical song and end up over their heads. But this is essentially the only good thing I can say about this album, and being able to play a song without messing it up too badly is... you know, a basic essential of performing and recording music.

Progressive is defined as "moving forward." Behold the Arctopus's music does not go anywhere. They are not progressive, only meaninglessly technical, and the album's sole purpose is to showcase this. People who think that Dream Theater have abandoned all notions of good songwriting to show off their technicality have clearly never heard Behold the Arctopus, because that is exactly what this band does. I can only thank BtA for making Horrorscension a short ordeal.

1.5/10

Insin | 1/5 |

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