Rings of Saturn
Ultu Ulla

California’s Rings of Saturn and their (jokingly) self described ‘aliencore’ are one of the more divisive bands in metal, even more some since allegations the band recorded their materiel at half speed and used Guitar pro. Whether you consider them technical death metal or deathcore, the band’s first 3 albums Dingir and Lugal Ki En got people talking about them, and personally I enjoyed them both.

So now here another alien concept themed release, now with  two new members (drummer Aaron Stechauner and guitarist Miles Baker) joining the core of guitarist Lucas Mann and vocalist Ian Bearer, and personally I’m digging the shit out of it. The band appears to have further developed their sound to be more sweeping and melodic, focusing their skill on actual riffs and cool melodic leads as opposed to a sonic, robot orgy.

The sound still is definitely one foot in the clinical, sterile realm of tech deathchore core with a programmed, mechanical tone, and lots of breakdowns, but at time the  there’s a cool, epic undercurrent with the synth and solos providing a Alien aura to Between the Buried and Me‘s older sound.

Opener “Servant of This Sentience” immediately shows of the band’s new found, fully developed sense of melody with a downright kickass breakdown and shredding lead. Of cruse the band still has lots of weird, quirky and suitably alien elements battling with the melodies such as the circus vibe of “Harvest”, the start off closer “Inadequate” and the instrumental flamenco piece “Unhallowed”, but the band definitely has developed and matured their tech chops into more vital and memorable songs.  Just listen to “The Relic” or the instrumental number “The Macrocosm”, and when bereft of the standard deathcore growls, screams and bellows, there is an intelligently crafted, well written memorable song here.

But fans of prior releases will find solace in the likes of “Immemorial Essence”, “Margidda” or “Prognosis Confirmed” for plenty of chaotic, crumbling, stop start riffs and seismic breakdowns. So the band still will be in the sights of divisive fans, but with a decent leap forward in their maturity and song writing, they don’t appear to be going away anytime soon.

[Visit the band's website]
Written by Erik T
August 7th, 2017


  1. Commented by: F.Rini

    Erik. Rings of Saturn have 3 prior records. Their debut in 2010 is Embyonic Anomaly. Looking forward to this. They’re a great band.

  2. Commented by: Grindymcgrinder

    Judging from the band pics Lucas Mann will be transitioning to Leslie Mann very soon. Other than that its ana amazing release and they play the songs live exactly ad they do on the LPs.

  3. Commented by: Dave

    Take away pro-tools, modern recording methods, and stick these guys in an analog studio from the mid 80’s. Would this recording be possible?

  4. Commented by: Grindymcgrinder

    As much as any other tech death band.studio trickery existed well before digital recording. But since these guys can play it wouldn’t be hard to just comp their performances on analog they way they do digitally.

  5. Commented by: Glenn Whitehead
  6. Commented by: Nick Taxidermy

    this blows. it sounds cheesy as hell.

  7. Commented by: F.Rini

    Erik does a great review and pointing out how divisive they are in the scene. I have heard a lot about how Rings of Saturn has attitudes and think they’re better than any other band out there. I do know based on generations, that a lot of younger bands experience more of a swell in popularity, quicker than the underground bands of 20-30 years ago. Could this be the cause of such egos?-Absolutely. I’ve yet to experience the band live and have never met them, therefore I cannot comment on the things I’ve heard about their attitudes or they’re one of the worst live bands around, as some have told me.

    All I can comment on is their music. I happen to be a huge Rings of Saturn fan. Love all their albums and have shown support by purchasing some of their shirts. This new album is wonderful and advances their sound even further. Just a killer band. This will make my years end best of list on TOTD. \m/

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