Tech Death Thursday: Duality

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Every now and then, a gem of an album will escape everyone’s notice. Fortunately, they don’t tend to stay buried for long. This week we visit one of those hidden gems from last year: Duality’s Elektron.

Nooz:

  • Willowtip Records confirmed to our own Celtic Frosty that the new Vale of Dongs will be releasing on June 10th. Prepare thine butts.
  • I somehow managed to completely gloss over Corprophemia’s savage new LP, Abhorrogenesis, which was released last week. Stream it in full over at Noise Reduction if you like your tech with a side of brutality.
  • Slave One must have read my criticisms of their last EP from last month, because they just put out a new single and it’s absolutely killer (and by that I mean they probably never even saw it and just got naturally better as musicians and songwriters in the four years since Cold Obscurantist Light came out). Look for the full album, Disclosed Dioptric Principles, via Dolorem Records on March 25th.
  • Ever wish your tech had a bigger focus on melody and atmosphere than on just going fast? Then turn your ears towards “Memories,” the new single from Heresy Denied. Look for their debut, Innerception, sometime in the near future.
  • Eximperitusimnottypingtherestofthisfuckingstupidassbandname have a song out that’s apparently new, despite the album it’s on being announced last February. Perhaps they would get things done faster if it didn’t take them so damned long to write out their song titles. Look for Prajecyrufuck it. It’s out in June.
  • The Zenith Passage have another new song out, “Deus Deceptor.” As people in the Youtube comments are pointing out, it sounds like Soreption in the best way, though parts of it are slightly reminiscent of the title track from The Human Abstract’s Digital Veil (also in the best way).
  • New Entheos? New Entheos. Check out the title track from The Infinite Nothing right here.
  • Lever of Archimedes just couldn’t wait to show us some new material and have posted a pre-pro track right here. If it’s any indication of the direction the band is headed, color me excited.
  • Because we didn’t already have enough unintentionally hilarious music videosOmophagia have graced us with a clip for their new song “Down We Fall.” Fortunately, German tech death bands are incapable of writing bad music, so the tune itself rips. Look for In the Name of Chaos on April 15th.
  • BRAIN DRILL BRAIN DRILL BRAIN DRILL BRAIN DRILL

The focus of tech death is almost always on the mechanical skills of the musicians. Songs are built around merging hooks with virtuoso performances, held together by riffs that may be short and complex, but are immediately pleasing to the ear. Don’t get me wrong; I love it wholeheartedly. I thrive on catchiness, on headbanging earworms and the simple joy of watching a guitarist effortlessly demolish his instrument in a blinding spray of notes. However, the other aspect of technical skill tends to get overlooked in the immense detail and care put into mastering the instruments; the actual songwriting.

You won’t hear any 360 BPM blasting on Elektron. Sweep-tapping is basically nonexistent here. Instead of placing the spotlight on the performance, Duality has focused on mastering composition, and are all the better for it. The sounds you’ll hear on Elektron are incredibly eclectic and always flow, even moving from a staggered crunchy guitar riff to a Latin-influenced break to distorted jazz. It never reaches Hadean or Ehnahre levels of mindfuckery, though; while the songs are complex, I wouldn’t necessarily say they’re challenging. It’s different, even truly progressive to my ears, but it’s pleasant to listen to (though I’m sure some will be driven away by the sudden murky dissonance of “Hybrid Regression”).

It’s masterfully mixed and produced, as well. The vocalist’s Darkest Hour-style screams are nestled comfortably into the mix with the instruments, rather than being completely buried or sitting atop the entire band. The guitars have a surprisingly thick crunch to them, but the bass is featured prominently as well (I’d go as far as saying the bass playing is one of the highlights of the album, in fact). Though the drums are triggered, they’re not done so aggressively; they feel naturally spaced with enough room to breathe. This is the kind of production I could stand to see more of in tech death; clean, but earthy.

This kind of writing doesn’t appear often in the world of tech, and it makes me appreciate it that much more. I can see myself savoring Elektron for a long time; it’s unique in all the right ways. If you liked what you heard as much as I did, check out Duality on FacebookElektron is available now through PRC Music; without them, most of us likely would never have heard it.

That’s all for now, and until next week:

Stay Tech

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  • Óðinn
    • Spear

      Needs more gravity blasts. 0/10

      • Óðinn

        Just say no to gravity blasts.

        • Gravity blasts can kindly fuck off.

          • TRY TO KEEP UP, OLD MAN.

          • The old man does not get it.

          • That’s cause he has arthritis and can’t play the drums so well anymore.

          • Haha. I can play them. I just don’t like them.

          • Ridiculous. None can deny the power of BONKBONKBONKBONKBONKBONKBONK for 48 minutes on end.

    • High on Vallenfyre

      Saw them open for High on Fire, they killed it.

  • What the fuck am I supposed to call that band? Excalibur? Exemplarybuttz? I already know my Iphone is gonna get pissed off at those song titles.

    • Dubs

      Most just say Eximperitus

      • That sounds boring though. Exemplarybuttz it is.

  • Vale Of Dongs?(expansion intensifies)

  • Boss the “Hoss” Ross

    Nice write up Spear! Though I’m not usually a Tech Death fan, the way you described Duality makes me want to give them a try. Well done!

    • Boss the “Hoss” Ross

      I like it! The quiet jazz interludes are really cool.

  • BRAIN DRILL BRAIN DRILL BRAIN DRILL BRAIN DRILL BRAIN DRILL BRAIN DRILL BRAIN DRILL BRAIN DRILL BRAIN DRILL BRAIN DRILL BRAIN DRILL BRAIN DRILL BRAIN DRILL BRAIN DRILL BRAIN DRILL

    • SUCK SUCK SUCK SUCK SUCK SUCK SUCK SUCK SUCK SUCK SUCK SUCK SUCK SUCK SUCK SUCK SUCK SUCK SUCK SUCK SUCK SUCK SUCK SUCK SUCK SUCK SUCK SUCK SUCK SUCK SUCK SUCK SUCK SUCK SUCK SUCK SUCK SUCK

      • Sir Tapir The Based

        Sounds just like almost every other Tech death band.

        • Shrimp in a Pizza Box

          “Almost”? Are you implying that there is one that you like?

          • He loves rings of Saturn. I specifically remember him saying “omg I love rings of Saturn so much. Half speed for life!”

          • Sir Tapir The Based

            Never actually heard a RoS song. Not interested in changing that.

          • Translated from Finnish:
            “I know every weedly and deedly by heart.”

          • Sir Tapir The Based

            U ppl r bein vry mean

          • MoshOff

            Dude, you like RoS and they suck about 1000000000000 times harder than the allmighty BRAIN DRILL.

            Plus that clip sounds less random-weedily than their other stuff.

          • I like select ROS songs, but that doesn’t mean I can’t make fun of people for liking the same shitty band that i like.

          • MoshOff

            Good point, back to Steel Panther it is.

          • Sir Tapir The Based

            Maybe.

          • Paddlin’ Rites ov Beargod

            I’m p sure he has at least one tech album that has been (briefly) featured on TDT.

          • Sir Tapir The Based

            U ain’t wrang. U know whet it is?

          • Paddlin’ Rites ov Beargod

            I think it’s Veniversum.

          • Sir Tapir The Based

            This bear knows things.

          • Paddlin’ Rites ov Beargod

            Hey, I am a god…

          • Sir Tapir The Based

            You’re a looney.

  • Dubs

    Spear, as always, thanks for your peerless writing. Duality kind of reminds me of a less-polished Allegaeon. I’m kind of jamming that brutal death from Corprophemia.

    • I liek the loose jazzy bits in Duality. It makes it feel like the band doesn’t take themselves too seriously.

      • Boss the “Hoss” Ross

        I liked those parts a lot as well

      • Brutalist_Receptacle

        THAT DUALITY IS THE SHIT DOG. BEEN STREAMING NON STOP SINCE TURDS DAY

    • Spear

      Hmm. I can kind of hear the Allegaeon comparison, but I thought it sounded like a more straightforward BTBAM.

      • I hear the Uhleejun comparisons and I hear Link’s Alyssa White Glutz comparison, don’t hear BTBAM at all though.

        • Spear

          Give it a couple songs.

          • You can’t make me. Also I have played BTBAM way too fucking much in the past and I think i made myself hate them.

          • [YouTube embed: Weird Al – “You Make Me”]

          • did you die?

          • i fixed it. wasn’t aware that certain characters did oddjobs in Disqus.

          • Boss the “Hoss” Ross

            Oddjobs?

          • special characters for formatting, like HTML. i threw in a bunch of characters and Disqus thought i was trying to format.

          • Boss the “Hoss” Ross

            Haha, did you get the picture?

          • oh NOW i did. remember your training, Bt”H”R: add RFI when appropriate (since Disqus can be a handful at times)

          • Boss the “Hoss” Ross

            My apologies, master. It won’t happen again.

          • i think the solution is clear: Disqus needs to apologize. take yours back!

          • lol why not just post the link?

          • i’m done posting large YouTube videos. especially when it’s just referencing something funny. i don’t wanna take up too much real estate in the comments section.

          • Dubs

            You’re the hero this poop fetish site deserves.

          • Paddlin’ Rites ov Beargod

            and the one it needs.

  • Spearrow, this Lever of Archimedes pre-production song sounds so fun. I hope they don’t mix nothing and leave it that way. No jokes!

    But, you’re right. Duality is the highlight today. It have some tiny melodic touches and the vocalist reminds me of Alissa White-Gluz. And those jazzy interludes are great!!

  • somebody tell BRAIN DRILL that the toilet fully embraces their style, and they’re welcome to come hang any time.

    • NO NO NO NO NO NO NO NO NO NO NO NO NO NO NO NO NO NO NO NO NO NO NO NO NO NO NO NO NO NO NO NO NO NO NO NO NO NO NO NO NO NO NO NO NO NO NO NO NO NO NO NO NO NO NO NO NO NO NO NO NO NO NO NO NO NO NO NO NO NO NO NO NO NO NO NO NO NO NO NO NO NO NO NO NO NO NO NO NO NO NO NO NO NO NO NO NO NO NO NO NO NO NO NO NO NO NO NO NO NO NO NO NO NO NO

      • Boss the “Hoss” Ross

        TOO LATE TOO LATE TOO LATE
        TOO LATE TOO LATE TOO LATE
        TOO LATE TOO LATE TOO LATE
        TOO LATE TOO LATE TOO LATE
        TOO LATE TOO LATE TOO LATE
        TOO LATE TOO LATE TOO LATE

        • Salvador Dalí Lama

          THE BEST THE BEST THE BEST THE BEST THE BEST THE BEST THE BEST THE BEST THE BEST THE BEST THE BEST THE BEST THE BEST THE BEST THE BEST THE BEST THE BEST THE BEST THE BEST THE BEST THE BEST THE BEST THE BEST THE BEST THE BEST THE BEST THE BEST THE BEST THE BEST THE BEST

  • Count_Breznak

    WORMED WORMED WORMED WORMED WORMED WORMED WORMED WORMED WORMED WORMED WORMED WORMED WORMED WORMED WORMED WORMED WORMED WORMED WORMED WORMED WORMED WORMED WORMED WORMED WORMED WORMED WORMED WORMED WORMED WORMED WORMED WORMED WORMED WORMED WORMED WORMED WORMED WORMED WORMED WORMED WORMED WORMED WORMED WORMED WORMED WORMED WORMED WORMED WORMED WORMED WORMED

    • Spear

      You’re a week late.

      • Count_Breznak

        Huh, looks like I missed last weeks installment. I still stand by that statement, anyways.

        • it was a timeless statement.

        • Spear

          Can’t blame you, it’s a gud

  • Haven’t listened to any of these TDT bands in way too long…

  • Waynecro

    Thank you for another killer Tech Death Thursday that overflows the Toilet with a mighty torrent of pummeling tech-death jams.

  • Celtic Frosty

    Really into this Duality record. Very balanced, and hits all the right spots with a subtle confidence. Great stuff.

  • Just getting to this, it rules