Neuraxis
A Thin Line Between

I would be an idiot to say this is a terrible album, but I couldn’t pass up saying this is perhaps Neuraxis’ most pedestrian moment. Where once bombast and sheer power dominated this, one of the most celebrated of the Canadian death metal bands around, now it would seem they prefer a different approach; one that utilizes familiarity, and in the embrace of the familiar, Neuraxis are close to donning the cloak of anonymity. They may be next in line with Arsis for diminishing output quality over the past couple of albums.

I mention Arsis because Neuraxis, like Arsis, made a great first impression on me with the first album I heard of theirs: Truth Beyond…, an album that just outright pummeled in terms of intensity and technicality, is the kind of album that gives you the best impression of a band’s potential – if they can churn out something this good, maybe their future recordings will be better! Sadly, we know all-too-well that in most cases, a band making consistently great albums is a hard find, but for a while, we could confide in Neuraxis’ abilities. The album preceding, A Passage Into Forlorn was really good, and Trilateral Progression jumped in right where Truth Beyond… stepped off. And maybe I’m being a little too critical here, but this is just not up to the Neuraxis par.

Sure, Neuraxis is still technical. But they’re not showstoppers this time around. ‘Darkness Prevails’ is pretty cool – it has all the elements I’d look for in a Neuraxis song, but there’s just this safeness about it. There’s not a lot of contrast between songs, short of the Neuraxis record-length title track, and that’s only because it takes you aback as to how long it is; a quiet, double-bass driven section about 3/4 through the eight and half minute track incongruously wakes you up and makes you pay attention (Luc Lemay’s appearance on the track certainly helps). After that, the album lulls in and out of forms and shapes we’re already aware Neuraxis was capable of creating.

That being said, the Neuraxis standard aside, this is an average death metal album. Safe. Run of the mill. Meeting the status quo. And if you are an absolute junky for tech death, Neuraxis’ll give you a quick fix until that Necrophagist album comes out (whenever the hell that’ll be).

[Visit the band's website]
Written by Kris Yancey
August 23rd, 2008

Comments

  1. Commented by: Red

    Ah Neuraxis, I really dig these guys, unfortunately Yancey is 100% correct on this review. What happened?!?!


  2. Commented by: gordeth

    I got the same impression when I heard Darkness Prevails. And you just confirmed my fears that the rest of the album is just as safe (i.e. boring). I’ll be passing on this one. What a shame. They were one of my favorite death metal bands.


  3. Commented by: AARONIUS

    I find it really odd that people are having this reaction to the new one. I actually think this one is more memorable than Trilateral Progression and for some reason was able to hang with it.

    Now granted the only other one I own from them is Trilateral Progression, so I wonder if I would have a different opinion if I had been following them since the beginning.

    I still think it’s a good album, and still better than most every other death metal release that will come out this year (the obvious exception being Necrophagist).


  4. Commented by: lasciv

    to each his own opinion. respect the review, it only solidified my belief in the aural service of neuraxis!!!


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