The Best Unsigned Band in Portugal is Colosso

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The best unsigned band in Portugal is Colosso. Obviously, this is not part of The Best Unsigned Band in the US but something I thought would be fun to try to slip past the editors [Joe: IT DIDN’T WORK, JIMMY]. One visit to the band’s Bandcamp page and you will see that “This album was self-recorded, self-funded, and self-released. Proceeds go directly to the artists involved.” It is hereby important that you check out Colosso.

The band’s debut LP Abrasive Peace left an impact on me; one that lasts to this day. The self-created album stands alongside any release among label-backed bands from 2012, and probably even tops them. Colosso found a niche market in the death metal arena and capitalized upon it: they do not dabble in the weedlies and the deedlies, but rather chose to annihilate the listener with unique time signatures, heavy as flush riffs, and atmospheric flair. You might find yourself hearing influences from bands such as Gojira, Meshuggah, and Fallujah, but never let that combination fool you, for the end product is much more than the sum of its parts. Take for example, “Demolish to Rebuild”:

This song is relentless; it suffocates the listener until it chooses to briefly let up and offer some time to breathe. Listen to that bridge at about the 2:35 mark. It’s moments like this that the band’s atmospheric tendencies kick in and give them a particularly interesting spin. “Demolish to Rebuild” embodies all the elements that make Colosso a band worthy of attention: metronomic blast-beats, grinding riffs that carry a Gojira-esque weight, and an overall song structure that makes it perfectly catchy upon even the first listen.  The keyboard riff that you hear in this track is repeated several times over the course of the album, providing a unique adhesive that helps make the record a tremendous journey from start to finish. The songs on Abrasive Peace flow together so terrifically, it’s almost a crime to just post one individual track.

The vocals on Abrasive Peace act as more of a percussion instrument versus the traditional role, which follows with bands like Meshuggah; while I do like the vocals, they are most definitely monotonous, and I totally understand how they could displease a listener or two. The band must have been aware of such a sentiment, and therefore released an instrumental-only version shortly afterwards entitled Peaceful Abrasiveness.

After what seemed like an eternity after 2012’s Abrasive Peace, Colosso went on to craft two EP’s to bridge the gap prior to releasing their sophomore album. The first is titled Thallium (October 14, 2013) amps amps up their adherence to math-metal but at the same time slows down their signature pace to an almost categorically DOOM sound.  Listen to a choice cut here:

“Ecosystem” provides a great transitional piece on the EP, joining the introductory instrumental and math-metal beginnings to an increasingly doom-inspired ending. It also happens to be the only track which I feel would fit perfectly on Abrasive Peace. All elements of this track embody the band’s modus operandi in a perfect way, without ever seeming rushed. I will admit to a certain degree of disappointment after my first hearing of Thallium, as it never seemed to be a direct successor to an album I would easily award a 9/10 rating… but over the past few months I’ve come to like it well enough.

On June 25, 2014 Colosso released the second EP titled Forgone Semblances, consisting simply of two tracks. Was I disappointed? Flush no, for these two tracks perfectly embody (even improve upon) everything incredible about their debut LP and restored every ounce of faith that Thallium depleted in me. The first song, “Circles of Defeat”, is as fast as or faster than anything from Abrasive Peace:

The second track is no slouch either; an instrumental death metal opus with a killer guitar solo that just leaves the listener wanting more. The Foregone Semblances EP might have been composed as a reminder to the world that Colosso A) is not dead and B) is ready to melt faces worldwide when they release their sophomore effort.  In April I received an e-mail from the band stating that they’re only months away from entering the studio, and added the following blurb:

All we can say right now is that our pre-production demos sound amazing to our ears and, if everything goes as planned, it’s going to be our best release to date.
Music-wise, it’s somewhat of a very dark blend of “Thallium” and “Abrasive Peace”…
It’s going to have ten new tracks of our usual ambient death metal, but with a darker vibe…
We’ll use our newest Jackson 8 string guitars on most songs…
… and that’s all we can say, right now!
Sorry, we don’t want to spoil the surprise any more…

I urge you to check out Abrasive Peace (which is on Bandcamp) in its entirety and purchase the album if it tickles you in the right way. The two aforementioned EPs are also available for $NameYourPrice. Prepare yourself for the next album…

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  • I came here just to post about Dr. Coloso:

    https://33.media.tumblr.com/a1dbf3264f4822c00d87c797f3836d94/tumblr_inline_nd8d3aQfK51qik7ms.jpg

    But, these guys are good, Macñulti. I don’t like the lousy production, but the drumming is… Is Joe around?…

    TOP NOTCH.

    Props, detective with the same type of hair than mine.

  • Tyree

    Meshuggah’s song “Bleed” is an abstract song that is about bleeding while you eat a meal with thorny silverware. Did I nail it?

    https://scontent-iad3-1.xx.fbcdn.net/hphotos-xtp1/v/t1.0-9/11265160_10206505868795680_7750303299731340112_n.jpg?oh=1307fa5b5c2e4d0a2287cbc0294d3002&oe=564D6835

    • Maik Beninton™

      Huh?

    • The Fish Boz

      This is exactly it. I heard it’s common in Scandinavia, and all the pain led to the formation of several extreme metal bands.

  • Malted Hate

    Portugal has the shittiest metal scene ever.
    This guys are amazing though: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=6QEaPGctw94
    Eagerly awaiting a full length.

    • I would argue that South Dakota has the shittiest metal scene.

      • KJM

        We just like to get high…

      • I expect West Virginia to contend for the title.

    • Ever heard of Besta? One of my favorite newer grind bands.
      http://youtu.be/RzZ1Vaf27xk

    • The Fish Boz
      • Dubzlinger, Malandro Slayer

        Man, I totally forgot about this release because the band makes it stupidly difficult to buy from them.

        • The Fish Boz

          Trapped is also not on Spotify, only their 2012 release. BUMMER

    • Ivo Durães

      Oh, shut up… Hope you are not portuguese, you are embarrassing yourself. Our scene is great.

    • Ivo Durães

      Népia, não disseste isso…

      • Malted Hate

        conta lá, campeão…

        • Ivo Durães

          Eu não conto nada, se queres ser hater a esse ponto nem vale a pena dialogar. Btw, nem digas que és de Sintra, fico envergonhado.

          • Malted Hate

            Man, eu sei que existem boas bandas em Portugal. Mas no geral é bastante fraco, principalmente para fãs de Black e Death.
            Bandas muito pouco originais, sem um estilo proprio e fraca apresentaçao.

            È a minha opinião, tu tens a tua. É tranquilo, não é o fim do mundo.

          • Ivo Durães

            O que acabaste de fazer já consigo tolerar como uma opinião e respeito, não o que escreveste aqui e em outro comentário porque roça outra coisa que não uma opinião pensada. Sobre a originalidade e estilos próprios percebo o que dizes mas também te digo que hoje em dia é difícil criar algo novo e “refrescante”, nós criamos música com base nas referências do que ouvimos, é inevitável, muitas vezes até se consegue misturar conceitos e sair algo positivo. É complicado reinventar a roda. Mas isto não é impedimento para se trabalhar como deve ser, lançar música bem feita. Mas deixa-me voltar ás tuas palavras que li aqui antes de comentar… O que tu escreveste (e outros escrevem) mostram o quão cruel pode ser o público perante o trabalho das bandas. Acho injusto, e daí a minha intervenção, porque conheço as bandas que mencionei, os seus membros e sei o trabalho que é feito, os sacrifícios feitos todos os dias, as complicações, os entraves e toda a merda que é preciso para conseguir criar música e partilhá-la com o Mundo. Se tens dois dedos de testa deves compreender que chegar aqui e ler que a nossa cena é merdosa ou que estas ou aquelas bandas são azeiteiras é um bocado de mau gosto, nem podem ser consideradas opiniões. Soam a desprezo e desrespeito total por algo que é feito com paixão. Não é que estejas a destruir as suas carreiras, longe disso… Mas não achas que o mérito existe, mesmo que não curtas a onda? Já é difícil andar neste meio com uma banda, ter concertos e ter algum apoio e cativar a malta, quanto mais ler palavras dos “nossos” em sites estrangeiros a denegrir e diminuir uma cena que sim, ainda tem muito para crescer, mas o que já cresceu vale a pena ouvir e recomendar. Desculpa o longo comment, mas como membro de uma banda de Metal em Portugal tinha que dizer algo…

  • King Shit of Fuck Mountain

    I call dibs on Luxembourg!

    • Dubzlinger, Malandro Slayer

      Are you finally going to cave in and write something?

      • King Shit of Fuck Mountain

        Hahaha. Doubtful. I know you’ve been doing the best US bands, so Portugal was very left field, hence my very bad obscure European country joke.

    • Sir Tapir The Based :]

      Good, I can have Liechtenstein.

    • Don Henley’s Ego

      Dibs on Lithuania!

  • Maik Beninton™
    • Don Henley’s Ego

      Awwwwwwww.

  • Howard Dean

    Sometimes you drink the champagne, and, well Dude, sometimes the champagne drinks you (right in the hip flexor).

    http://www.radass.com/wp-content/uploads/2015/08/Radass-Daily-pic-dump-best-22.gif?fd94e5

    It’s unfortunate (and strange) that Portugal has a fairly poor metal scene. The scene is thrivong next door in Spain (with the likes of Teitanblood, Proclamation, Hic Iacet, etc).

    • Paddlin’ Rites ov Beargod

      Portugal has Moonspell. What else could they possibly need?

      • Malted Hate

        Decent bands, we need decent bands!
        (can’t stand Moonspell personally)

        • Sir Tapir The Based :]

          I’m pretty sure very few can stand Moonspell.

          • Malted Hate

            Over here is the go-to band for the hottopic goths and the punching bag for the trve clochards.

        • Paddlin’ Rites ov Beargod

          Few aight songs and a good debut EP (but that was really different from the rest).
          But isn’t it, like, the only Portuguese band anyone knows?

        • Ivo Durães

          you sound like those guys who’s band is not making it and likes to bash other bands just for the heck of it.

      • Ivo Durães

        our scene is a little more complex and richer than that… Many great bands that are absolutely killing it and getting international attention. Moonspell is indeed our most famous metal band but people really need to get past that and find a fierce metal scene with quality and attitude.

        • Paddlin’ Rites ov Beargod

          I don’t know the Portuguese scene really. Not apart from the bands posted elsewhere here.
          (Btw, ’twas a joke) 😉

          • Ivo Durães

            Yeah I got it 🙂 but that Malted Hate guy is portuguese and is being somewhat of a hater of “his” own scene.

    • Malted Hate

      Yeah, Portuguese kids only care about hardcore, and metalheads are mostly corny dudes trying to either sound like iron-maiden rip-offs or groove-metal-infused diarrhea.
      There’s some cool bands here and there, but all-in-all is pretty weak.

      Spain on the other hand has lots of gems. Teitanblood being their crowning jewell IMO.

      • JamesGrimm

        sounds like ohio.

      • Ivo Durães

        That is not true, what do you really know about the portuguese metal scene? Apparently nothing!

      • Ivo Durães

        Estás um bocado enganado sobre a cena portuguesa… Não sei a que concertos tens ido mas provavelmente precisas de ir a mais!

    • only way this could have been more perfect: it hit him in the nutz

  • Guacamole Jim

    “Circles of Defeat” is my favourite out of the three. The music is solid, but I’m not sold on the vocals. Thanks, though, McNulty! Definitely a cool listen.

  • The Fish Boz

    Good job McNulty. I like how you laid out the article, it’s good to hear from more bands from the terrinha. I have family in Portugal and a close connection to the country. 🙂

    • Malted Hate

      Where is you family from man?
      (I’m from Sintra)

      • The Fish Boz

        They are from the North, place called Felgueiras. IIRC it’s like 40 minute drive from Porto.

  • Tyree
    • OHHH, YEAH!!!

    • Paddlin’ Rites ov Beargod

      Good news it be.
      This song isn’t anything special doe. Picks up towards the end but still a little stale.

      • Tyree

        Yeah, nothing special. But it’s fucking Grave, so I’m still pretty stoked. Song rips too, pretty damn fast.

        • It’s cool, in the end goes blasty swedish style. That’s what I like.

    • Angry Ghosts In My Boogers

      There’s a blast from the past! One of the first DM bands I ever got into way back when.

    • CT-12

      Where’s fucking Scrimm?!

  • This some rowdy stuff Lt. McNulty. It’s almost double zero brutal.

  • Tyree

    Kirk Hammett died mid performance in Kid Rocks Mansion.

    http://i1045.photobucket.com/albums/b451/Tyree_Grindhart/T_zpsxtae0xuz.jpg

    • Tyree

      Philip Seymour Hoffman’s last photo was taken in Kid Rock’s mansion.

      • Maik Beninton™

        I guess it’s a haunted mansion.

      • Angry Ghosts In My Boogers

        Phillip Seymour Hoffman died right as Tiny Tim died halfway through making Jessica Alba a bisexual superhero during a performance at Kid Rock’s mansion.

        #ToiletDetectivesUncoverTheDarkTruth

    • Tyree

      Jessica Alba got a boob job in Kid Rock’s mansion.

    • Where are you seeing these ads?

      • Tyree

        Fucking Blabbermouth. No worries.

        • Angry Ghosts In My Boogers

          Are they still in TMZ mode over there? (yes, the comments section is about as bad as TMZ’s, too).

          • KJM

            Always. Besides, any site that has FB exclusive commenting is an automatic fail.

          • Angry Ghosts In My Boogers

            TMZ went to the Disqus direction, and it’s just as bad.

    • Maik Beninton™

      I guess Kid thought he was an intruder.

    • CyberneticOrganism

      Doctors Hate These 15 Artists Who Died Mid One Weird Trick Performance In Kid Rock’s Mansion Singing Lyrics That Will Blow Your Mind That Only 90s Single Moms In Superhero Costumes Will Understand

      *explodes*

      • Angry Ghosts In My Boogers

        Kirk Hammet killed Tiny Tim mid performance. Probably jealous that Tiny Tim was going to take his spot in Metallica.

        • King Shit of Fuck Mountain

          Well, at least Tiny Tim never used a wah wah.

          • Angry Ghosts In My Boogers

            Tiny Bubbles >>>>>>>>>>>> Lola.

      • You’re terminated.

    • Angry Ghosts In My Boogers
      • Guacamole Jim

        #SayNoToFamilyGuy

        • Angry Ghosts In My Boogers

          #FuckYouToAssholesWhoSayBabyMetalFansArePedos.

          • Guacamole Jim

            #YesAllBabyMetalFans

          • Farty Codpiece Poopoo Warrior

            #bitesyourbruisedbuttcheeks

          • Farty Codpiece Poopoo Warrior

            PS. fuck you. Calling a band’s fans pedophiles and actually meaning it is an insult.

    • JW(E)G

      if that article doesn’t mention Mark Sandman, it’s not worth the bits & bytes it was printed on.

  • BEARD OV GREAT DAWKINS

    I want to like this jeemy but it’s just kinda boring

  • CT-12

    Sounds cool mangle. Danks for the post

  • Guppusmaximus
  • Malted Hate

    This guys are pretty cool too:
    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ECTx4ulJ4AE

    • checking this out… thanks for the Portugal recs, mang!

    • Angry Ghosts In My Boogers

      I vaguely remember hearing them not too long ago. Might have to spin it again.

    • CT-12

      So this is very fucking good and I want it on tape right now. Thanks for sharing!

  • CyberneticOrganism
  • Waynecro

    I was just listening to Colosso the other day. I dig ’em.

  • Angry Ghosts In My Boogers

    Another fine choice, McNulty! I’d also highly recommend these guys:

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=O4ydK3Aw8GQ

    • i liek this, very muhc!

      • Angry Ghosts In My Boogers

        Yep Yep! Hit me up on email. Got a couple of questions.

  • Ivo Durães

    People, Colosso is a great band, great musicians, very tight live! But there are also other great bands over here, this article kinda makes it look that our scene is weak but it is not. I invite you all to discover a little more about it, bands like WAKO, Switchtense, Revolution Within, Terror Empire, Primal Attack, Legacy Of Cynthia, WEB, etc… Check them out.

    • Malted Hate

      Só me estás a dar razão. Só referiste bandas azeiteiras.

      • Ivo Durães

        Não sejas troll, fica-te mal.

    • apologies, Ivo! that wasn’t my intention in writing it… but i can see how it seems that way. i will definitely check these out!