Rating:
9.0
Fleshgod Apocalypse - Oracles
30 March 2009


01. In Honour Of Reason
02. Post-Enlightenment Executor
03. As Tyrants Fall
04. Sophistic Demise
05. Requiem In Si Minore
06. At The Guillotine
07. Embodied Deception
08. Infection Of The White Throne
09. Retrieving My Carcass
10. Oracles


All right let's get this up and going already! Fleshgod Apocalypse are a brutal death metal outfit formed in 2007 with only a demo and split record to their name before unleashing this gem, known simply as "Oracles". For those of you who are unfamiliar with the term, an oracle is an esteemed individual, akin to a wise-man, who has foresight and/or is capable of predicting events that have not yet occurred. The irony therein stems from the complete lack of foresight this reviewer had prior to hearing this album, in spite of the hype surrounding it.

A modern-day Renaissance man of instruments, vocalist Francesco Paoli is noted for transforming an otherwise bland Hour Of Penance into a brutal death metal juggernaut with the release of their strongest material to date, The Vile Conception, afterwords going on to form Fleshgod Apocalypse. What Paoli touched on in with The Vile Conception was perfected with this release, although the two have their differences. Oracles follows the typical brutal death metal standard also heard on The Vile Conception: beastly growls, ceaseless rapid-pace blastbeats, heavily down-tuned guitars with the occasional two-second "scream solo" played by immensely talented guitarists with a bias for technicality over structure, and classical music...

...Wait, what? Classical music in brutal death metal? You bet! This is where Oracles becomes a bit of a black sheep, more easy to recognize but not any harder to look at. The interlude as heard on "Embodied Deception" as well as Italian-style classical music, such as at the end of "As Tyrants Fall", add to the sincerity of the music and keep it from sounding monotonous, while providing the album with a more inviting atmosphere in contrast to the extreme elements.

What needs to be highlighted about this album is its flow, something easy to disregard given the genre classification, though foolish it would be to do so with this release. From beginning to end the instruments tear through your aural defences, but with the inclusion of slower parts (most apparent in "Requiem In Si Minore") and orchestral pieces (not to mention the choir at the end of "Infection Of The White Throne"), this album comes across as a catchy slab of technically sound meat, lasting less than 40 minutes even with the 3-minute self-titled outro composition.

The only significant flaw is structure, not in regards to the entire album, but to each individual song. It becomes apparent half-way through this release that the classical sections make their appearances only when kicking off or closing out a song, a minor detractor that could have been remedied with the addition of more classical parts in the body of each song as opposed to just beginnings and ends in order to change up the sound and increase the warmth of the album's atmosphere throughout the entire playback. That being said, this issue is easy enough to ignore and is simply a must-have for lovers of brutal and technical death metal, though I would highly recommend it to any open-minded metalhead.

Performance: 9
Songwriting: 10
Originality: 9
Production: 9


Band profile: Fleshgod Apocalypse
Album: Oracles


 


written by Troy Killjoy | 15.02.2010


Guest review disclaimer:
This is a guest review, which means it does not necessarily represent the point of view of the MS Staff.



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Paradox0 - 17.02.2010 at 17:52  
Boy I must REALLY be desensitized because I fell asleep listening to this lol. Not really a bad album, but I guess brutal death metal isn't really my thing.
Mr. Doctor - 17.02.2010 at 18:36  
Written by Paradox0 on 17.02.2010 at 17:52

Boy I must REALLY be desensitized because I fell asleep listening to this lol. Not really a bad album, but I guess brutal death metal isn't really my thing.


I don't think it's you... I like some Brutal Death Metal and I found this to be very boring. It was good the first 10 minutes but after a while it went downhill.

6,5 at most.
Troy Killjoy - 17.02.2010 at 18:39  
Written by Paradox0 on 17.02.2010 at 17:52

Boy I must REALLY be desensitized because I fell asleep listening to this lol. Not really a bad album, but I guess brutal death metal isn't really my thing.


Judging by your album votes (with perfect scores given to Agalloch, Ayreon, Arcturus) I wouldn't think you'd enjoy this style of metal; it's a lot higher on the extremity chart than your average progressive metal band. For "easier-to-get-into" BDM albums, try listening to Destroy The Opposition or Descend Into Depravity by Dying Fetus; None So Vile or Once Was Not by Cryptopsy; and Identisick or Icon by Benighted, although this ranks pretty high on the catchy scale given the genre.
Paradox0 - 18.02.2010 at 09:33  
Written by Troy Killjoy on 17.02.2010 at 18:39

Written by Paradox0 on 17.02.2010 at 17:52

Boy I must REALLY be desensitized because I fell asleep listening to this lol. Not really a bad album, but I guess brutal death metal isn't really my thing.


Judging by your album votes (with perfect scores given to Agalloch, Ayreon, Arcturus) I wouldn't think you'd enjoy this style of metal; it's a lot higher on the extremity chart than your average progressive metal band. For "easier-to-get-into" BDM albums, try listening to Destroy The Opposition or Descend Into Depravity by Dying Fetus; None So Vile or Once Was Not by Cryptopsy; and Identisick or Icon by Benighted, although this ranks pretty high on the catchy scale given the genre.


well to be honest, I've fallen asleep to other things too. I was just mentioning a somewhat silly thing over the fact that I could fall alseep to this, but i'll check out those albums if i can, although I'm alittle curious about wht counts as "average progressive bands" when those albums you mentioned are actually pretty stand alone IMO. To me, the spirit of progressive metal died LONG ago, and their all just trying to be dream theater and "intelligent", but i guess thats like any genre of music based on a specific ideology of "higher mindset".
Troy Killjoy - 18.02.2010 at 21:14  
Written by Paradox0 on 18.02.2010 at 09:33

well to be honest, I've fallen asleep to other things too. I was just mentioning a somewhat silly thing over the fact that I could fall alseep to this, but i'll check out those albums if i can, although I'm alittle curious about wht counts as "average progressive bands" when those albums you mentioned are actually pretty stand alone IMO. To me, the spirit of progressive metal died LONG ago, and their all just trying to be dream theater and "intelligent", but i guess thats like any genre of music based on a specific ideology of "higher mindset".


Fair enough, I find myself bored with lots of music myself, some within the more extreme genres of metal as well as the "softer" bands. And to clarify: "your average progressive band" should not be taken as "those bands are average", but as "any ol' progressive band". I don't want you thinking that I find those listed bands as "just average"; on the contrary, I find them to be very purposeful in what they do and respect their histories.
K†ulu - 19.02.2010 at 13:09  
Well, I agree that there should be more classical or just melodic moments throughout the songs. But must say that I really didn't the first four songs I guess because they all seemed like one long continuous blast beat. Requiem In Si Minore was more interesting as I could at least hear the guitars. I hope these guys will create something more melodic on their next release. I will listen to this more and then maybe post something else.
Troy Killjoy - 19.02.2010 at 18:31  
Written by K†ulu on 19.02.2010 at 13:09

Well, I agree that there should be more classical or just melodic moments throughout the songs. But must say that I really didn't the first four songs I guess because they all seemed like one long continuous blast beat. Requiem In Si Minore was more interesting as I could at least hear the guitars. I hope these guys will create something more melodic on their next release. I will listen to this more and then maybe post something else.


With Hour Of Penance focusing more on the brutality aspect, I think Francesco Paoli formed this band in order to get out some of his more melodic ideas, meaning there is a better chance that FA produces something more melodic in the future, which I would welcome with open arms.

I agree for the most part about the album's opening; it isn't necessarily as varied as could be and tends to drag on, hence the 9.1 and not a 9.7 or something higher. I still think it's one of the best 2009 death metal albums, slightly behind Process Of A New Decline, but on par with Cosmogenesis and Those Whom The Gods Detest.
kurotenshi - 27.02.2010 at 02:44  
I don't usually enjoy brutal death and I can't say that I liked this particular album but it certainly hold me for a lot longer than the usual brutal death bands would. It's more dynamic, and the classical touch gives it a more "professional musicians" touch.
Ag Fox - 28.04.2010 at 17:03  
The classical aspect of it is good, but it feels detached. They need to find some way to proper;y incorporate it into their brutal death sound, then they'll sound a lot more inspired
Troy Killjoy - 28.04.2010 at 17:16  
Written by Ag Fox on 28.04.2010 at 17:03

The classical aspect of it is good, but it feels detached. They need to find some way to proper;y incorporate it into their brutal death sound, then they'll sound a lot more inspired


I think that's mostly due to the fact that the classical segments seem too planned out, as they only start or conclude a song. There would be more variation if they incorporated more of those compositions throughout their songs, not just at the beginning or end.

PS - I still stand by my rating on this one, which can't be said for a lot of my earlier reviews.
Ag Fox - 28.04.2010 at 17:20  
Written by Troy Killjoy on 28.04.2010 at 17:16

Written by Ag Fox on 28.04.2010 at 17:03

The classical aspect of it is good, but it feels detached. They need to find some way to proper;y incorporate it into their brutal death sound, then they'll sound a lot more inspired


I think that's mostly due to the fact that the classical segments seem too planned out, as they only start or conclude a song. There would be more variation if they incorporated more of those compositions throughout their songs, not just at the beginning or end.

That's exactly what I meant. Having these classical moments throughout their songs is the key
Dangerboner - 03.05.2010 at 11:53  
Great review! How any death metal fan can rate this below an 8 or 9 is beyond me. As for the classical parts, I'm fine with the length and actually, I'd probably be a little annoyed if they were longer, with exception to the awesome chamber choir outro of Infection of the White Throne. I especially like the short piano intro in Embodied Deception. Damn that song hits hard!

My favorite parts are when they all stop for half a second, then go again. Gets me every time
Troy Killjoy - 03.05.2010 at 14:59  
Written by Dangerboner on 03.05.2010 at 11:53

Great review! How any death metal fan can rate this below an 8 or 9 is beyond me. As for the classical parts, I'm fine with the length and actually, I'd probably be a little annoyed if they were longer, with exception to the awesome chamber choir outro of Infection of the White Throne. I especially like the short piano intro in Embodied Deception. Damn that song hits hard!

My favorite parts are when they all stop for half a second, then go again. Gets me every time


Thanks! This is definitely a modern death metal classic (no pun intended) and is worthy of a higher rating here (although 8.4 isn't bad for a new death metal album). I definitely have no problem with the length of the classical parts, I'm just not sure I would have only placed them at the beginnings and ends of the songs. And indeed "Embodied Deception" is a great song - not to take away from the others, in fact I don't think I have a favorite when all's said and done. I just listen to the whole thing straight through.
Maxx666 - 20.11.2010 at 09:04  
Yeah this is a great album indeed, i love it. i myself would rate it above 8.5. and nice review btw.
Maxx666 - 01.04.2011 at 10:18  
Really this is an outstanding album, i had no idea that it was this good...it grows with time...this time it gets 9.5 from me...
Deadmeat - 01.04.2011 at 11:38  
I like this album a lot but i think that where it really lacks, is the songwriting. it has nice structures, variety etc but i ont think that they've written what man can say AMAZING SONGS...

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