Fleshgod Apocalypse – Labyrinth

Fleshgod-Apocalypse-LabyrinthItalian symphonic tech-death maniacs Fleshgod Apocalypse chose a Greek-mythology-inspired lyrical theme for their third studio outing, and it serves as a metaphor for each and every human being’s never-ending search for his or her true self. Such a theme complements the band’s grandiose music well indeed; for even sonically, the listener finds him/herself lost in an intricate and multi-layered sonic labyrinth that seems to have some elusive secret buried somewhere inside of it.

Due to its Classically-influenced symphonic elements (which sound as prominent as ever), the 54-minute-long album begs to be consumed as an inseparable package; just like listening to an hour-long symphony at one-go. Every track sounds equally majestic and brutal, and it is near impossible to cherry-pick any track.

To throw in a bit of novelty, there is even a peaceful interlude in the form of ‘Prologue’, which is an instrumental song played on the classical guitar by a guest musician using fingerstyle technique.

While the electric guitars have been shifted a bit higher up in the audio mix this time round, the symphonic elements—in the form of explosive horns, dark string passages, interjections of soprano singing, stormy piano accompaniment—still command greater attention than the traditional metal elements. This is, however, not a weakness at all. In the first place, a large part of Fleshgod Apocalypse’s appeal lies in their sophisticated orchestral arrangements and its awe-inspiring execution by whichever professional Classical musicians they hired.

8.5/10

Dane Prokofiev

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