Fallujah – Empyrean

Fallujah
“Empyrean”
Progressive/technical death metal
Released: 9th September 2022
Via Nuclear Blast

empyrean

Fallujah have been releasing new material every 2-3 years but I was really curious about this “Empyrean” – after seeing them live back in 2019 and both bassist Rob Morey and singer Antonio Palermo making quite an impression, learning about their departure made me want to check how the new line-up would do. Well, it does pretty good – the bass lines are grooving loudly and the vocals still brutal.

I don’t know if it’s because they started out as a deathcore band, but their technical traits don’t go over the edge. Sure you have tempo twists and elaborate spinning riffs, but not in a wait-what-happened kind of way; the songs grow naturally towards such intersections and lead into beautiful pieces such as “The Bitter Taste Of Clarity” or “Duality Of Intent” (the latter bearing a slight jazzy vibe quite interesting).

They’ve worked with Tori Letzler before and brought her back for the brilliant “Radiant Ascension” and the brisky “Artifacts”, inviting also Katie Thomson for the seductive “Embrace Oblivion” and the melting “Into The Eventide” (my personal favorite). But I believe these guest appearances are more intended for a contrast/completing effect with Kyle Shaefer’s voice than actually adding a female touch; as for the demonic pitch of Chaney Crabb on “Soulbreaker”, well, that’s definitely extramundane.

All in all, “Empyrean” offers the right combination of features to make happy a prog & tech death metal fan.

8/10

by Renata “Pieni” Lino

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