What has Blizzard’s “World of Warcraft”, Swedish prog metal act Vildhjarta, the “Eiffel Tower” of French prog metal named Uneven Structures, and UK metal prog metal groovers Monuments in common? My answer to that question is “The Pandemonium”, and it’s a delicious and tasty mixture of progressive metal indeed.
By a coincidence I stumbled upon this quartet hailing from within the borders of United Kingdom, and what an uplifting surprise and listening experience it has been. With support from guitarist, composer and producer John Browne (ex-Fellsilent), who is mostly known as the mastermind of the UK djent giants Monuments, this quartet of three guys and one girl are ready to rock your world…big time.
On board this prog metal ship sailing the seas of polyrhythm sound waves flooding into the landscape of progressive metal, we have currently four young and talented musicians from London, UK, leaded by composer, producer and guitarist Yazid Osman. His wingman Joe Sandover is helping out with the production of the crunchy heavy low tuned guitar riffs, and then upfront a rather unusual vocal department is in charge with a traditional “beauty and the beast” setup, consisting of female vocalist Denise Ritchie Mourato and male vocalist David Castaño Cortado.
Their latest contribution to the blooming djent scene is entitled “Tyrannis”, and includes four tracks running nearly 23 minutes of playing time. It will move our minds through sceneries of ambient soundscapes with layers of harmonic progressions, jarring inharmonic staccato riffs and mammoth melodies, all perfectly complemented by the clean, unique and soaring angel voice of Denise, and the harsh brutal screams by her counterpart David. “The Pandemonium” are traveling along the same road as Vildhjarta soundwise, but still they have somehow reinvented this distinct sound into something of their very own, and with help from the magic fingers of John Browne, produced an almost flawless mix and mastering of this EP with a heavy, solid and crystal clear sound added to each of the songs.
So Thrall is an important character in the “World of Warcraft” universe, and with support from the musicians of Vildhjarta, “THALL” the slurred pronunciation of Thrall should be on everyone’s lips by now, even “The Pandemonium” has been infected by the trademark of “Thall” and Vildhjarta. Just check out the name of the opening song Thralldom, coincidence…unlikely. Maybe the French prog act Uneven Structures has not been “influenced” by a PC game like Vildhjarta, but their guitarist Igor Omodei is a very talented graphic artist, and has provided the stunning cover artwork of this release, which makes the whole package “Tyrannis” look like a very polished gem, well done.
I’m must admit this is one of the best EP’s, which has been touched by my ears and eyes for a very long time. This is definitely highly recommended to any proghead with a penchant for experimental progressive metal with a sound that has its roots deeply buried in the core of the “djent” universe.
“The Pandemonium” has proved to be a bright beacon in the depths of progressive music today, and with the announcement of a full album to be unleashed this year by the quartet, I couldn’t have begged for more. Loving it, hail mighty “THRALL” aka “THALL”!