Hey there tech fiends, it's that time of the week again. Before we dive into today's focus, here's the usual reminder that if you're looking for more sick music, all prior editions of this series can be perused here.
Exterminatus is a Vancouver-based act I’ve been following for some time who dropped a very promising debut called Veni Vidi Vici in 2013 that mixed outlandish Origin and Rings Of Saturn influences with killer melodic death, groove death, and progressive death elements in a refreshing way. The band cites influences ranging from Origin, Lamb of God, Gojira, Amon Amarth, Vital Remains, Jeff Loomis, Arch Enemy, Decapitated and that’s pretty spot on blend of how all over the map they are musically.
Five years after the release of Veni Vidi Vici and they’re back with their highly ambitious second full-length album, Laniakea. I’m excited that we’re launching the early stream today ahead of its official release this Friday, September 28th. The wait was worth it as the time poured into this album’s wonderfully eclectic nature and ungodly dense-yet-listenable songs shows bright and clear that this is a band on to something special.
They’ve dropped much of their prior core influences this go around, and really cranked up the prog-death aspects of their sound on Laniakea while introducing flashes of black metal as well for the first time. That's of course when they're not going full-on Origin and Archspire style twisted hyper-shred at warp speed as is often the case. In spite of dropping some of their core heft soundwise now, they still know how to bring ungodly crushing heaviness and sickening brutality to the table like pros. Something I’m always in favor of as a lot of tech death lately seems to offer little in the way of crushing heaviness nor prime brutality yet those are death metal staples baked into the genre for a reason.
Laniakea is quite an impressive leap forwards for Exterminatus, which is nuts considering how impressive Veni Vidi Vici is where the band already had a highly developed sound even at that point. There’s a lot going on throughout Laniakea but it’s straightforward at times approach, groove focus, and melodic nature mixes it up enough of the time to eschew the tech-death insanity becoming overwhelming or one-dimensional. This album also has a tremendous bass performance I have to highlight which can sometimes be that wicked something extra to the music that draws me further in for quality tech-death. Which is to say nothing bad of the other members and various contributors to the writing of some of this release, everyone involved is incredibly talented and quite versatile as musicians. I’m kind of surprised something this good wasn’t snatched up by a label, Laniakea is a tremendous effort of mind-boggling depths and soaring proggy heights.
If you’re looking for a top-notch tech-death worthy of your time, I highly recommend you jam and then purchase Exterminatus – Laniekea as soon as possible. This album has something for just about everyone and it’s all ridiculously well done. Be sure to follow the band over on the Exterminatus Bandcamp Page where the album will soon be up for sale soon. You can also follow the group over on the Exterminatus Facebook Page.