code – Lost Signal

London-based Progressive Black Metal group code wanted to revisit some older material on their Lost Signal (Agonia) EP to see if they could cast it in a new light. This EP is six songs in total, comprising of three from the album Mut (Agonia) and three from their first three records. The band produced and mixed the EP themselves to show rich power melody and dynamics.

On first listen I heard a lot of what sounded to me like a Radiohead influence with mostly clean singing and clean ambient guitar tones, indeed, most of the aggressive, distorted sounds can be found on the first song ’On Blinding Larks’, which is one of the shorter, more minimalist songs of the six. This is followed up by ’Cocoon’, which has more of a traditional rock song format and lots of ethereal clean vocals with heavy guitars to back them up. Oftentimes the vocals sound like The Devil’s Blood or even Ihsahn on his solo records, but the strongest comparison is Alcest or the similar yet slightly more disjointed sound of Ireland’s Altar of Plagues. A small use of harsh/ guttural vocals can be found of the song ’Affliction’, which helps break up the almost monotone singing sections.

Even though the songs are from four different records, they all seem to sound almost identical with a very open airy, almost whimsical vibe to them, falling flat and sounding stale and boring at times,

Sadly while there are compelling elements to code’s sound that shine through on Lost Signal, it fails to captivate or provide any real motivation to return for repeat listens.