Obsidian - Emerging review
And yet again another promising young Dutch band that gets a proper release by Rusty Cage Records. Emerging was originally recorded and released in 2006 by the band themselves and mixed and mastered by Jochem Jacobs (Textures) with Serge Regoor (ex-Amethyst) on vocals. So why do we get a re-release of Emerging, you might ask? Well, shortly after the recording of Emerging, Obsidian and Serge decided to part ways. A new vocalist was quickly found in the person of, none other than the renowned, Robbe K (Disavowed, Arsebreed). March 2007 saw Obsidian land a contract with Rusty Cage Records for an international release of Emerging. This re-release of Emerging is fully remastered and recorded by, once again, Jochem Jacobs, featuring the new vocalist Robbe K.
Since I never heard the 2006 release I will just focus on the 2007 version which is in one word: Great. First aspect that caught my attention was the beautiful digipack it is presented in: An x-ray type painting covering the front and back in which I see references to a couple of the songs (more specifically Kobalt and Vapours). But with just a visual presentation you still won't score high marks, it's all about the music, right?
Just as the accompanying bio states the band plays progressive death metal in the vein of bands such as Meshuggah, Scarve, Cynic, and Opeth and I would like to add Atheist as well. So, expect professionally executed technical, not easily accessible, death metal. With a great production thanks to Jochem Jacobs, who is quickly gaining a name for himself as a top-notch producer. The amalgamation of the influences of the aforementioned bands see to it that Obsidian does possess an own identity. Okay, so there are moments when you do hear the influence of a band such as Cynic in some jazzy passages, or bands such as Meshuggah and Scarve in some of the rhythms, and a song such as the instrumental Emerging wouldn't have been out of place on Atheist's Elements. As for the Opeth influence to me that's the least prominent of the influences, this would be more a vibe thing than a more specific musical influence. But mixing them all together in this way with Robbe K's characteristic vocals as icing on the cake sure as hell delivers a damn tasty own identity which should bring us years of happiness to come.
The running order of the cd is in such a way that everything flows naturally and is over before you know it. Never a boring or dull moment, or trying to be progressive and technical just for the sake of it, always keeping it to the point and varied.
A great debut album that bodes well for the future. And with the sort of progressive death metal Obsidian plays they can go every which way they want musically. Obsidian aren't afraid to experiment and take chances. That's a good sign in today's stagnating, and playing it safe, metal scene.
Although all eight tracks on Emerging are strong I would specifically want to recommend opener Footprints, Vapours, and the instrumental Emerging.
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| Marcel Hubregtse
Grumpy Old Fuck
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