Xenosis
Devour and Birth

Well, this certainly was an awesome recommendation.   New Haven Connecticut’s Xenosis have literally blown me away with their third full length album, Devour and Birth.  The opening track “Night Hag’ mixes progressive elements from bands like later era Death, with the melody and harmonies of a band like Spawn of Possession or Beyond Creation. I also like the brutaller, guttural vocals over this particular style of death metal versus a more mid ranged styled vocals.  The opening tracks end with some hooky groove sections and the bass work over the top of it is incredibly well layered and fluid.  The drum work of is all over the place. I like that there is not an entire festival of blast beats going over every tempo change. Where there are blasts they are well placed in the song structure. One thing is for sure the album continues to build throughout and the syncopation use throughout creates some very catchy hooks that I cannot really say that i have heard in a technical death metal extent. For running almost seven minutes it is a meticulous opener.

“Army of Darkness” has a Cryptopsy vibe going on with some lower end note climbs with Flo Mournieresque double kick lines bringing out string section. There is an amazing clean break about a two minutes in that brings my ears in like a trance.  It seems like these guys have really hit a stride with this album.  I am a bit surprised that these guys are not already on an established death metal label.  The overall production and musicianship is really solid and I could see these guys blowing up based on such an awesome release. “Delirium” is continues to show the fantastic melodic sense of guitarists Ken Bullard and Mark Lyon.  This particular track reminds me a bit of Voivod in terms of mixing up odd time signatures with point counterpoint riffs.

“Concave” opens up with some “Sound of Perseverance” ish riffing that would make Chuck Schuldiner proud.  This track is another example of the fantastic drum work of Gary Marotta. I like the way these guys can accent parts making you think something is an odd time when in fact they are not.  As opposed to younger “djent” bands out there that want to play an open string rhythmic pattern there is much thought and effort put into these arrangements that is missing in a lot of technical death metal today.

If you are looking for well-played, catchy technical death metal that has a strong emphasis on groove these guys are definitely for you and I would definitely put this one way up on my list for best death metal albums released so far this year.  Start to finish this is a really well done effort and I would imagine with the right combination of touring and word of mouth buzz I could see great things ahead for these guys.  This is a complete package of catchiness, solid instrumentation across the board with very interesting song arrangements. I would put this up with The Zenith Passage, Arkaik, and Archspire as far as precision goes.  Nice to hear this kind of played on the east coast as opposed to the west coast. Enjoy!

[Visit the band's website]
Written by Nick K
February 1st, 2018

Comments

  1. Commented by: cryptofascist

    Ok, I’m checking this out esp if they keep it guttural without that ya ya vocal shit…sounds totally up my ally with you dropping the ‘Vod in there too :)


  2. Commented by: Nick K

    It has flash and groove.. I am honestly surprised that they are not on a bigger label. Maybe this release will be the catalyst to that.


  3. Commented by: Byrath

    Just 4 minutes into the first song, but I can say the production is phenomenal (and this is just on spotify free). Both guitars are clearly heard and the bass is right in that sweet spot … just shy of being too much. Liking this a lot!


  4. Commented by: Nick Taxidermy

    the leads on the posted track are really expressive and cool.


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