Coherent Liquid Form - New Existence
Self released
Extreme Metal Hybrid
11 songs (59'29")
Release year: 2003
Coherent Liquid Form
Reviewed by Alex

I thought I’d take a cue from the band’s name while writing this review. The music on New Existence is definitely multi-faceted, fluid and not stagnant (thus Liquid). At the same time, it has so many tempos, approaches and style influences it does not always hold together (thus NOT Coherent).

This Minnesotan band issued 11 tracks on this full-length album that are impossible to categorize. Coherent Liquid Form blended melodic death and black metal, technical progressive guitar playing, chaotic thrash, superfast drumming and harmonies into one virulent strain of extreme metal. No two songs on New Existence are alike. The band can start with a melodic lead similar to a Gothenborg sound (Chained) only to finish up thrashing so hard they trip over themselves. Melodic riffs can alternate with a heavy dose of what seems to be a superbrutal blastbeat by Corey Jones on the title track. Clean droning guitar degenerates in progressive technical death metal late Chuck Schuldiner would be proud of (Tyrants of the Light). Coherent Liquid Form shifts rhythms faster than we shift gears driving a stick-shift in a busy downtown jam. All CLF musicians know how to wield their instruments. Riffs range from mid-pace Morbid Angel to oddball Opeth, and bass wankery by Chris Bartsch playing in a countertone to drums on Devouring Hybrid Creation is impressive, invoking the shades of Steve DiGiorgio.

The only musicianship aspect I didn’t like were the vocals by guitarist Matt Anderson. I guess he is longing for some black metal atmosphere, so he tries to sound evil. Instead, he just grates on you with his uniform screams. Here and there, he tries to spice it up by throwing a deathy growl (title track) or even singing cleanly (Fate Whispers Solitude). I still think it is not enough, and CLF should rethink their vocal approach. Even though the band has nothing to do musically with Cradle of Filth, just like Dani Filth’s vocals distracted and sometimes alienated the listener, CLF vocals subtract from the overall effect.

I bet you understand by now that this not your straightforward, easy-to-listen to extreme metal. Band’s songwriting is so complex not many other bands can pull it off. It wears on the listener though. I have started listening to the album several times, only to feel tired and having to put it off. Once I got through the whole album and knew what to expect, I started enjoying certain portions of every song. This album does not have a standout track, but it also does not have absolute clunkers. The band clearly possess a good sense of melody, so streamlining their approach a little bit, along with clearer production (please, add booming bass) would help. Strangely enough, a band mixing all of those influences I listed above exists, and it could serve as a blueprint to CLF. The name is Polterchrist out of Philadelphia, another unsigned gem of a band. I actually did a review of their 4 track demo not too long ago.

If the smarts of your brain match the evilness of your soul, give Coherent Liquid Form a try. $12 ppd from Imperial Archives ( is all it takes.

Killing Songs :
Devouring Hybrid Creation, New Existence, Tyrants of the Light
Alex quoted 64 / 100
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