As we are stuck at home wondering what to do with all this unprecedented free time, I believe that we should invest our time to catch up with all the releases that have come out this year. Actually, I have to get into that myself, there are a lot of releases that I have missed so far this year and Azusa’s Loop of Yesterdays (Solid State Records) was one of them. I’m glad I listened to this album though, it has a very interesting balance between really heavy Melodic Death Metal riffs and progressive/experimental segments that present big ambient soundscapes.
What I find interesting about this band is the mixture of personnel from bands that, generally, wouldn’t make sense that they would be working together. And that is because Azusa is considered a Progressive Extreme Metal supergroup formed by Liam Wilson (The Dillinger Escape Plan), Christer Espevoll and David Husvik (Extol), and Eleni Zafiriadou (Sea + Air).
This album is composed of twelve bone-crushing tracks. The opening track of the album ‘Memories Of An Old Emotion’ is probably the most technical and experimental song in the album. Equally heavy and beautiful, this is my favorite track of the album. Tracks like ‘Kill/Destroy’ bring a heavy groove border lining with some hardcore influences that would have you hooked in the album from the get-go. Another track ‘Detach’ opens with some riff patters that may even remind you of Jinjer up to some extent. Heavy, yet very melodic and memorable. One thing that impressed me is the vocal range that Zafiriadou performs in the variety of the songs, from high screeched screams to soothing vocal passages that make you wonder if it is even the same person singing all parts.
After listening to all of the tracks, I can honestly say that this is one of the best and most completes albums I have heard this year. Azusa brings a very intriguing piece of work that promises a very bright future if they continue through this musical path. If you’re looking for tracks to complete your “lockdown playlist”, consider Loop of Yesterdays.
8 / 10