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Pestilence - Spheres CD (album) cover




Tech/Extreme Prog Metal

4.18 | 125 ratings

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Prog Reviewer
5 stars I first heard this album when I was in middle school, at about 16 years of age. I remember I was a fan of black metal, and I was browsing the internet listening to various 30-second samples of black metal until I somehow came across this album and listened to it. At that moment I realized "$%&* black metal, this rules". Soon that album had been purchased and my mind exploded.

"Spheres" by Pestilence is one of the quintessential jazzy death metal bands of the '90s, along with Atheist, Cynic, Sadist and Death (not jazzy, but very important), so if you're a fan of any of those bands then you will find much here to enjoy.

There are a few things that stand out on this album: 1. This album has a sci-fi theme. Not only that, but the tones of the instruments sound sci-fi themselves. 2. The bass playing is incredible. Since this album, I've been a huge fan of Jeroen Paul Thesseling, and you might be too after hearing this album (also, check out his new band, Obscura). 3. These vocals are so nasty. 4. Fantastic riffs.

"Mind Reflections" and "Multiple Beings" both start off with two of the best metal riffs I've ever heard, and they go great with the confusing, spacey tone of the guitar and bass. The guitar solo on "Mind Reflections" is very bizarre and jazzy and it kind of pulls itself away from the rest of the song forcing your mind to pay attention.

"The Level of Perception" sounds very robotic to me, kind of like a pre-Meshuggah sound. "Aurian Eyes" is a post-modern sci-fi string arrangement that serves as kind of an interlude and an intro to "Soul Search" which continues temporarily with strings before it dives into the same insanity that the previous tracks consisted of.

"Personal Energy" is a much more subdued song in the metal realm when compared to the rest of the album, sounding entirely more like jazz-fusion. It's a fantastic and beautiful song and definitely one of the best tracks on the album. "Voices From Within" is another short interlude, but of the serene jazz-fusion type, and that leads into the title track that takes us back to metal, but "Spheres" offers a great keyboard solo at the end followed by those fantastically cheesy and wonderful '80s sounding jazz synth noises.

"Changing Perspectives" is probably the most bizarre track, and definitely the noisiest. This is what being sucked through a black hole would sound like if followed by metal-minstrels with sitars.

"Phileas" is another short jazz-fusion interlude, essentially a bass solo by Thesseling (fantastic), which is followed by this album's conclusion track. "Demise of Time" includes more of the fantastic metal riffing that was present at album's starting point combined with the jazz-fusion elements that got stronger as the album progressed. There couldn't have been a better way to end an album of this sort, except by maybe the apocalypse brought upon us by aliens hearing this album. What hath man wrought.

Jazzy death metal doesn't get much better than this here, folks. A definite masterpiece of the genre.

colorofmoney91 | 5/5 |


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