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Susperia - Cut From Stone (FLAC)
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Susperia - Cut from Stone

Full-length, Tabu Recordings
April 2nd, 2007


1. More 03:33
2. Lackluster Day 03:22
3. The Clone 04:14
4. Distant Memory 06:55
5. Release 04:44
6. Life Deprived 04:23
7. Between the Lines 03:35
8. Bound to Come 03:45
9. Under 04:09
10. Brother 03:16
11. Cut from Stone 05:11

Total playing time 45:07

Written by Tymell  on May 18th, 2007

In Cut From Stone Susperia take their music in new directions, not enough to alienate long-time fans, but to keep them interested by not getting repetitive, and they really pull it off nicely. Each song gives glimpses of other metal genres, while sticking firmly to what we know as Susperia, and it's an impressive accomplishment as well as a good way to show off their skills by tenatively stepping into new regions. At times I wonder if the album cover, featuring face photo pieces pieced together, connects to this way of piecing together different metal genre styles, though perhaps I'm looking too deeply.

Susperia is great as ever for aggression, don't think that each track is wildly different and that they've abandoned this trait. Few other bands help me thrash out my aggression so well, aided by a very crisp production sound (something I find to be a strong feature of the band throughout their career). If you're feeling angry, you won't find much better than this. It's perfect for people who like sound that pounds and thrashes at the same time, making use of catchy riffs and a vocalist that edges towards black/death vocals, but never actually goes there. For someone like myself who loathes the actual sound of death metal, but enjoys strong, angry thrash, these guys are an absolute Satan-send. They still have the mixed sound they're known for; the brutal riffs and beats underlined with an overall melody, allowing it to appeal even beyond full-on metalheads. I've had many friends not overly into metal enjoy some of Susperia's work, and that by no means lessons the metal side of it.

Skillfully this album avoid being labelled as any one genre exactly. It has little elements of black, thrash, death, metalcore, all sorts, and they don't let themselves, as so many do, simply fall into one area and never shift from it. Instead, they seem to make their own music, regardless of genre conventions, and just move around as they wish. Lackluster Day and More are Susperia with metalcore, Distant Memory is them with classic metal, Release is them with groove, Life Deprived is them with death. It never goes fully into any one of those, and none of those tracks would truly fall under those headings totally, it's just a flavour. Lackluster Day and More might have a metalcore theme, but the thrash riffs and non-conventional vocals (for metalcore I mean) stand out. The Clone has some of that, and also has a few death influences at times with it's drum beats and vocal styles, but this is more prominent in Life Deprived, where the verses contain strong blast beats and with vocals just that little bit more gutteral than normal, but with the verses staying melodic so it doesn't just become straight up death metal (as well as the guitars not becoming typically down-tuned).

Throughout the album we see this theme of Susperia taking little bits from all over metal and weaving them into their own kind of music, and it sounds like a risky venture, but they pull it off nicely. As I've already said, Lackluster Day, More and The Clone contain a metalcore theme and Life Deprived elements of death metal, and in addition to that we have other such examples:

Distant Memory is very catchy, and a nice new sound we haven't had from them much before, with a distinctly classic metal flavour to it, the simple yet catchy riff sounding like something from Saxon or Judas Priest, and combined with their own brand of melodic metal it makes for an interesting offer. The chorus has an energy reminiscient of power metal in some ways, overall it sounds strongly influenced by old-school 80s rock-metal, and rather than thrashing or headbanging this one's more likely to have you rocking and singing along in a more hair or glam metal style (this is only the general feel of it though, I'm not actually claiming it comes under that heading overall). Seems they decided to try out yet another style, and yet keep it rife with their trademark methods.

Release sounds quite like Annihilator in it's more minimalistic sound (compared to usual Susperia) and it's strong emphasis on groove, and again they try out something new. In fact, speaking of Annihilator, Cut From Stone is far more deserving of the title "Metal", as it draws influences and traits from the entire spectrum of metal while the band melds them together in their own style.

And for Bound To Come I'll go out on a limb and compare this almost to gothic metal in some respects, even power in the chorus, although I stress this is only in little bits and vague sound. I'm not trying to strain my point about them taking different aspects from all over, but really, the core song structure does remind me of some gothic metal. Yes, it's not that kind of sound in many ways, but the vocals have a soaring quality in the chorus, and the background melody of the lead guitar also seems to compliment that. It's got a kind of softness and a melodic feel, but maintains an almost gothic darkness.
Thus, each track is kind of a glimpse into other genre aspects, and throughout the album we see "What if you took Susperia and had them play X metal subgenre?". It really is very effective.

On songs like Under, Bound To Come and Release, the vocalist tries out a slightly new style, with a melody to it and a feel of emulating less aggressive vocals, at times reminding me of Poisonblack a little. He's still perfectly capable of doing the angry growls typical of earlier albums, and shows that off plenty of times, but it has the level of emotional depth that isn't present so much on earlier albums. In something like The Bitter Man on Vindication he conveys emotion purely through anger, which is fine, but on Cut From Stone he varies it a little more, and it's a nice development, matching the music in a more melodic tone. Still angry, still aggressive, but at times able to show off a more mellow side that sounds typical of that "trying to be freed from pain" style, and I see it as a good sign of development. He's obviously not afraid to push himself, try out something new, and it works well. A word of warning though: some might not like it. But personally I think we've got enough raw anger on some of the songs here and many older ones, some variation is nice. And no one who listens to the roars of "WAR!" on Brother, "More!" in that song of the same name, or any of the vocals on "Life Deprived" can claim he's not still capable of the brutal style. He just varies it a bit more.

The lyrics are good too, with nice meaning behind them rather than just going for more worn topics, and focus less on rhyme, more on the vocals becoming a part of the music and flowing with them. The musical style is comparable to the latest offering from Machine Head, "The Blackening" (very audible on Lackluster Day for example), but less epic, more based on catchiness and groove/rhythm. Additionally, in Between The Lines we really see Tjodalv really show off his drumming skills, the drums form a prominent part of the song as a whole.

Overall Susperia continue to do well, both changing their sound enough that it doesn't become tedious or predictable, while at the same time staying distinctly "Susperia", with a blending of semi-metalcore sounds and thrash riffs that remind me of Lamb of God or the latest Machine Head. Some might not take to the more melodic vocal styles, but I like it, and the music still rocks very hard, that much is undeniable. I for one like to see a band experimenting and pushing their boundaries while still staying true to a particular kind of music. If you're already a Susperia fan, give this a try, it's still them don't worry. If you're not, then it's still fantastic metal. And if you're not even really into metal at all, this might still surprise in it's variation. Always heavy and powerful, always Susperia, but waving around a lot of different styles in some ways.

Comments

come on guys, SEED!!
Plzz seed it stopped at 5.7 %! ;D
Why in hell is this flac files!!!!???
I cant even put them on my damn Ipod!! :O:O:O:O
what flac lol