Rating:
8.2
Melechesh - The Epigenesis
1 October 2010


01. Ghouls Of Nineveh
02. Grand Gathas Of Baal Sin
03. Sacred Geometry
04. The Magickan And The Drones
05. Mystics Of The Pillar
06. When Halos Of Candles Collide [instrumental]
07. Defeating The Giants
08. Illumination - The Face Of Shamash
09. Negative Theology
10. A Greater Chain Of Being [instrumental]
11. The Epigenesis


The Epigenesis marks the first we've heard from the Sultans of Sumerian Sonic Slaughter since Emissaries was released four years ago. The band continues pretty much where they left off, playing what is basically at it's core midpaced melodic black metal.

Melodic black metal. Ho-hum. Don't we see enough of this?

Well, not quite like this.

The band, originally from Israel (they have since migrated to the Netherlands for personal and professional reasons) draw their primary influence from the ancient history of the region, going back to Sumerian and Mesopotamian times for imagery and lyrical themes. They also incorporate loads of scales and instruments that are foreign to many of our western ears. Or even our metal ears. (Quick. Name five albums that also feature a baglama saz, bendir, tar, and saz. )

The result is exceptional.

Thanks to the sneer of vocalist Ashmadi, and his teaming with ninja-guitarist Moloch for some great riffs with a fantastic tone provide what would be upper-rent melodic black metal if they just played it straight. These guys are undoubtedly quality musicians.

Now when you add to that foundation all of the exotic scales and instruments most of us have likely never heard of (right, sure, you have a santur lying around your house just gathering dust) it creates a wondrous atmosphere. The midpaced pieces, like "Sacred Geometry" and "Mystics Of The Pillar" have an almost ceremonial feel to them. The faster pieces on the album, such as "Grand Gathas Of Baal Sin" feel like the heated, whipping winds of a sirocco when they do surface, and punish the listener.

The album also features a couple wondrous instrumentals that further the mood of the album, while also providing a short respite from the assault.

The Epigenesis concludes with the vast and sprawling title track, an ambitious piece which goes of for 12 minutes, capturing the various moods and modes of the album into one hell of a closer.

I suppose in trying to describe the band and album, people might jump to "Melechesh is to melodic BM what Nile is to DM"... but that is only a partially accurate way of looking at it. With Nile, it's an Egyptian-enthusiast's Egyptian themed metal band. This has a more organic, natural feel. It's not a "Sumerian themed" metal album so much as a Sumerian metal album. If that makes sense.

While the songs are enjoyable, largely for their "uniqueness" when projected against most of the MDM landscape, the album is perhaps a bit long - it's about a full hour in before the epic closer starts... but if the band continues to put out albums only during World Cup years, I'd rather get too much than not enough.

Performance: 9
Songwriting: 8
Originality: 9
Production: 9


Band profile: Melechesh
Album: The Epigenesis


 



Written on 05.11.2010 by
BitterCOld
BitterCOld has been officially reviewing albums for MetalStorm since 2009.
More reviews by BitterCOld ››



Comments

‹‹ Back to the Reviews
Comments: 20  
Users visited: 301  
Search this topic:  


!J.O.O.E.! - 05.11.2010 at 10:47  
Will find time to try this one again. Might have glossed over it a bit quickly.
Daniell - 05.11.2010 at 11:10  
At first glance this one is quite discouraging - 70 minutes of music, pleanty of songs. But if you know Melechesh and enjoy their other releases, you should definitely check this one out.
Mikyz - 05.11.2010 at 19:02  
It's not bad, but it's no Emissaries and it's too long for my taste. I'll give it another try though.
MétalNoir - 05.11.2010 at 20:11  
Good review, but it should be mentioned that the band dropped their trademark "oriental drumming", which made me pay them attention in the first place. Now I'm not confused if I should mosh or dance: I just mosh.
Yojimbo - 05.11.2010 at 21:04  
I've been listening to this album for a couple of weeks now. At first I felt it was too slow, but the more I listen to it the better I like it. I don't think it's as good as Djinn or Emasseries but this band is so unique that they simply make great albums. Also, "The Magickan and The Drones" is one of the best songs they've ever released.
Kenos - 05.11.2010 at 21:20  
Yeah it's great and intriguing after all, but for the moment I wouldn't put it among the best of 2010 imho.
K†ulu - 05.11.2010 at 22:12  
The world cup comment is brilliant! It would be even funnier if Sphynx had been released in 2002.

I listened to Epigenesis only once (before the review was posted), and now I am encouraged to listen to it again, but when I think about the length, I want to play something different. Still Melechesh is something you have to check out.
GT - 07.11.2010 at 13:21  
Have only heard the songs on their MySpace, but they were really good, so I'll have to check the rest of the album too
dancingdecember - 08.11.2010 at 00:02  
I was able to hear about the ongoing production through a friend since it was produced in Istanbul at Babajim Studios. Good that the production is being recieved nicely globally.
elseif - 14.11.2010 at 01:04  
Sacred Geometry owns
.Nemesis. - 14.11.2010 at 05:40  
Fuck yeah
B.O.K. - 30.12.2010 at 14:32  
I think they deserve 10 point for this album
Ragana - 06.04.2011 at 12:45  
Written by elseif on 14.11.2010 at 01:04

Sacred Geometry owns

Ya', what kind of a song name is that? The song's cool, though. I'm still trying to get this band. Never liked it... seemed too catchy. :?
Mr. Doctor - 06.04.2011 at 18:06  
Written by Ragana on 06.04.2011 at 12:45

Written by elseif on 14.11.2010 at 01:04

Sacred Geometry owns

Ya', what kind of a song name is that? The song's cool, though. I'm still trying to get this band. Never liked it... seemed too catchy. :?


For someone who bleeds math like me... I love that title
Also... it's the combination of catchiness but still being very "in your face" that I love in this band which put them in the first place for me among all the other stuff that is supposed to sound from the middle east.
Ragana - 06.04.2011 at 19:12  
Hey, I like maths too, but it just seemed... funny. I like funny. :?

Yeah, well, I go for Orphaned Land and - just as you - think it's the best among bands that sound oriental, but I'm not gonna compare both bands just... because. They're totally different although both have that unique Middle Eastern sound (well, that I obviously like in both bands), there's just something about Melechesh that I haven't figured out yet.
Mr. Doctor - 06.04.2011 at 19:38  
Written by Ragana on 06.04.2011 at 19:12

Yeah, well, I go for Orphaned Land and - just as you - think it's the best among bands that sound oriental, but I'm not gonna compare both bands just... because. They're totally different although both have that unique Middle Eastern sound (well, that I obviously like in both bands), there's just something about Melechesh that I haven't figured out yet.


My answer to your post will be exactly the same as yours but the band names the other way around
Ragana - 06.04.2011 at 19:42  
I know.

Eh, tell me which is the best album by Melechesh? Maybe I just listen to the worse albums and try to get something out of htem...
Mr. Doctor - 06.04.2011 at 19:55  
Written by Ragana on 06.04.2011 at 19:42

I know.

Eh, tell me which is the best album by Melechesh? Maybe I just listen to the worse albums and try to get something out of htem...


I actually know very little about this one but the one I like the most must be Emissaries. I just think the first 2 songs are perfect and also the hipnotic folk instrumental (it's in the middle I think)... But from what I heard of this one I could recommend it to along with Sphynx. IMO they went from "good" to "pretty damn good" with Sphynx. So yeah... The 3 latest album with special mention to Emissaries (specially thr first 2 song and the intrumental but all that album is gloriously sunny)
Ragana - 06.04.2011 at 20:05  
Gloriously sunny, huh? Allrighty. XD I've heard 'Emissaries' a couple of times and I do remember some very catchy melody (I'm not so sure about 'Sphynx'), but I suppose I gotta listen those albums in a different order. And more than now.
tuerda - 29.07.2011 at 19:09  
OK, I finally got around to listening to this album and I was very surprised. For starters, to date they have not really produced an album which leans this heavily on folk elements (in previous ones I was hardly able to hear them at all) and it is a dramatic shift from their previous "thrashy" records. In fact this one even feels like it leans slightly in the direction of prog, which is very much NOT the case for anything they ever did before. I actually really enjoyed this album. I think it is their best one yet.

Advertise on Metal Storm


Login or register to post here.



Similar topics

Forum Topic Similarity Started
Reviews Kozeljnik - Null: The Acheron Of Multiform Negation 4.5 16.04.2013 by ANGEL REAPER
Reviews Somnus Aeternus - On The Shores Of Oblivion 4.5 27.09.2013 by Wohma
Reviews Darkthrone - Circle The Wagons 4.5 21.04.2010 by Mr. Doctor
Reviews The Belonging - An Immortal Creation 4.5 30.06.2011 by Richard
Reviews Who Dies In Siberian Slush - Bitterness Of The Years That Are Lost 4.5 19.02.2011 by MechanisT



Hits total: 5786 | This month: 61