The Eyes of the Soulless
The largest hurdle to hybrid styles is getting the ratio right, or simply finding a way to make the sound wholly cohesive. Calgary’s Krepitus do just that on their debut full-length The Eyes of the Soulless. The band hit a near-perfect balance between death and thrash, which, to be fair, are two that can coexist quite well. One thing both have in common is a guitar-centric approach, and Teran Wyer and Matt Van Wezel are fantastic axemen. The riffs, leads, and solos are a real treat, mixing up retro and modern approaches at will. The Eyes of the Soulless sees the band crafting melodeath-inspired thrash but with a modern tech death approach. Imagine of Allegaeon were less a soaring prog/tech band and more in tune with Death and Carcass, and you’re most of the way there.
However, Krepitus are more than just interesting thought exercises. These eight songs are all excellent, with each having a unique identity. Songs morph from riff-based monsters to soaring 80s solos and melodic interplay. It’s impossible not to break out the invisible oranges when hearing the album, as Krepitus really nail the spirit of metal, old and new, with this excellent album. If there is a complaint about the record, it’s the muddy, old-school production. While it isn’t a nail in the band’s coffin, a bit clearer, cleaner production could’ve done the album added wonders. Oh well, that can’t stop The Eyes of the Soulless from being one of the best extreme metal debuts I’ve heard in a while.