The Advent Equation
Limitless Life Reflections

Warning: this review breaks the record for Opeth references.

Initially, the first few minutes of this unannounced release hinted at some sorted of pretentious, Proggy, SPV/Sensory type release, with wafting clean vocals and sharp, stuttering progressive riffage. However, about three minutes into opener “Glimpse of What May Be”  guitarist Daniel Cordoba unleashed a Akerfeldt-ian bellow, signalling a experimental and progressive death metal release that the most Opeth-ian album I’ve heard in a long time.

And who would of thought in a year that saw an excellent release from Daylight Dies, that a debut from  a band from Mexico would release a stellar album that sounds more like Opeth than Opeth do now. With Cordoba’s deep bellows, Margil H. Vallejo’s svelte clean croons and a vast array of light dark sonic textures, Limitless Life Reflections harkens back to Still Life and Blackwater Park well as reminding me of pre suck Dark Suns. The mix of gruff angular death metal and experimental cleaner hues with a dash of 70s swirly keyboards all come together to make you forget Heritage.

I mean even the guitar tone and rangy songs (7-11 minutes) all imbue the once lauded Swedes before their shift into non death metal pastures. Heck, the album was mastered by Jans Bogren! (though produced and mixed by home country producer Charles Logic)  Need I say more? And while lots of bands have kneeled before the Opeth altar (Swallow the Sun, Dark Suns, Persephone, Novembers Doom, Dynahead, The Morningside, Farmakon, In Mourning, Gwynbleidd to name just a few of the more memorable ones) I can safely say The Advent Equation is easily the recent band that nails the sound best. Call it mimicry, flattery an homage or a flat out riff off, either way, you need to hear these guys if you miss classic Opeth.

Still don’t believe me? just go to the 5:26 mark in third track “Purification Lapse”, and tell me you aren’t getting a pure, classic Opeth vibe. I fucking dare you. However, while they certainly have that influence (and no others really) they do have a certain sense of song writing to make the sound their own and deliver the obvious influence with gusto and excellence.

The album is chock full of wonderful moments that thoughtfully weave gorgeous introspective moments, subtle keys, soaring vocals and intelligently crafted, restrained and crunchy death metal.  Notably the heftier duo of “Afterlife Evolutionary”  and closer “A Violent Motion” (with a very nifty Hammond organ break) and the album’s 11 minute centerpiece “A Descent into the Unreal”, which does all the above perfectly, with a really nice, heavy death metal chug about 5;50 in showing the band isn’t all about show casing their proggy side, but just to remind you, it is followed by a cool little jazzy/piano break. For fans of those smoother moments there are plenty like the start of “Visions of Pain”  and start of  second standout penultimate track “Hopeless” (which features some cool female vocals and a glorious piano flocked ending) or the aforementioned opener.

Like the debut from Be’lakor a few years ago I’m stunned this is a self released effort and it’s not from Scandinavia, it’s just a shame it was released so late in 2012 that it didn’t get enough press coverage to sneak into some year end lists (our own Jordan Itkowitz did give it a mention). So if you feel Opeth are no longer the kings of this style, having apparently moved on to more 70s filled pastures, this is a must have for you, and one that will impress a lot of people, not just Opeth fans.

[Visit the band's website]
Written by Erik T
January 23rd, 2013

Comments

  1. Commented by: Nick Taxidermy

    so basically, they sound like Mortician.


  2. Commented by: gabaghoul

    yeah this was impressive. I debated putting this on my year-end list but ultimately chose Moonloop (another band of Opeth acolytes). both are well-worth checking out for Opeth fans though.


  3. Commented by: Luke_22

    This sounds promising. Also, thanks for the heads-up on Moonloop Jordan, really digging the samples.


  4. Commented by: Charles Logic

    This album was not PRODUCED by Jens Bogren it was only MASTERED by him. I´m the one who PRODUCED and MIXED it please be clear about this stuff, since it is very important for some people (like me). Either way this is a good review though.


  5. Commented by: E. Thomas

    will fix- thanks for the heads up


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