Neorhythm - Zetetic
Self released
Progressive death / djent
10 songs (40' 18")
Release year: 2018
Reviewed by Andy
Surprise of the month

Neorhythm was a band I hadn't encountered before, but apparently they're from Finland and prefer to conceal their identity by means of wrapping bright red cloth around their face, hinting that they are possibly space aliens (something I consider quite possible, though I can't confirm it either way). Their first LP, referred to by them as "space metal", is an interesting mix of groove and progressive death metal influences, with a healthy dose of hardcore stirred in as well.

The album starts with one of its best tracks, Molten Mind, which immediately shows that although Gojira is an influence on the band, the djent riffing in this one and several other tracks recalls Meshuggah. The overall ambience is simple, rhythmic, and tight, with the groove-laden guitars in lock step with the drumming, and the songs are short, starting and stopping abruptly. Sometimes that makes songs blend into each other, but most of the time, even if you're not a huge djent fan, the songs are quite listenable. Golden Mean, which they released earlier on Bandcamp as a single track, is also one of the most atmospheric of an album that has little interest in creating atmosphere.

It's all in the name: The rhythm is definitely the most important element of the Neorhythm sound. Vocal-wise, we get hardcore-style shouts accented from time to time with whispers, but the riffs are the stars of the show. The lead solos are so squeaky-clean that they're almost afterthoughts; they're decent and contribute some variation to the rhythm riffs that all stay down in the lower register, but they're no tour de force of technical ability. Philia Lost, which combines the guitar groove more effectively with the lead than some of the other tracks. It's not a particularly balanced package, and it's not as technically complex as some of the progressive greats, but the riffs are good and the duo is extremely tight.

Bandcamp: https://neorhythm.bandcamp.com/album/zetetic.

Killing Songs :
Molten Mind, Golden Mean, Philia Lost
Andy quoted 82 / 100
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