Back in 1996, Swedish death metal act Edge of Sanity released Crimson - a shocking musical statement that pushed the boundaries of extreme metal as we knew it. The brilliant sci-fi lyrical story, combined with crushingly brutal Swedish-styled riffs and an epic forty minute progressive rock-influenced composition made Crimson one of the most important death metal releases in the genre's history. So why did I start out my review by giving a brief synopsis of this fifteen year old masterpiece? Because I could very well see Necrodeath's Idiosyncrasy having the very same effect within the modern thrash metal crowd.
This single forty minute composition obviously bears resemblance to Crimson in its length, but also in its musical vision and adventurism. Idiosyncrasy may not reach the masterful craft found on Crimson, but I do sincerely hope that this adventurous effort puts Necrodeath on the extreme metal map at large. If you haven't checked out these Italian death/thrashers yet, Idiosyncrasy is a damn good place to start listening.
Idiosyncrasy sticks to groove-infested modern thrash metal throughout much of its duration, but it also features lots of tempo shifts and dynamic changes. Necrodeath also adds a few acoustic guitar portions, giving the album a nice contrast between melody and brutality. Of course, Idiosyncrasy has an "epic" edge due to its 40 minute length for just one song, but it also has a few other progressive tendencies that aren't often found in modern death/thrash. In addition to crushingly heavy thrash riffs, there are also some twisted and jazz-influenced bits that show that Necrodeath are very much interested in experimentation and innovation. The sleek and modern production also suits the music perfectly.
Idiosyncrasy is a pretty original album, and that's one of the first things I hope for when listening to newer releases from more experienced bands. It may seldom deviate from a fairly standard modern thrash formula, but its epic scope and progressive tendencies always keep things interesting. I'd say this impressive effort from Necrodeath deserves 3.5 stars.
1. Part I
2. Part II
3. Part III
4. Part IV
5. Part V
6. Part VI
7. Part VII