Wednesday, December 12, 2012

Reader Submissions: Amputation Spree: Koyaanisqatsi

In the Hopi language, "Koyaanisqatsi" means "unbalanced life".  I cannot think of a better description for this twenty minute long track, the latest from "thinking man's slam" band Amputation Spree.  Just as any good twenty minute song should, this track covers a broad spectrum of sounds and tempos.  It is unsettling and noisy, and yet oddly charming.

This is the third time I have reviewed something by Amputation Spree and the band always seems to surprise me.  The last time around, I commented that "Amputation Spree continues to push the boundaries of slam death metal, forcing the genre to evolve somewhat away from the simplistic style it has largely become known for."  This is once again true with this track.  There are not a lot of slam moments, as Amputation Spree relies mostly on progressiveness and unusual structures, but slam moments do still shine through once in awhile.  It is becoming increasingly tougher to categorize the band though, especially as this song really moves away from the mostly predictable slam death metal genre.

For the most part though, this is a haunting and harrowing track, alternating between extremely heavy moments and more psychedelic and trancelike moments.  There are even some clean vocals thrown in from time to time to keep things very interesting.  The song reminds me of Edge of Sanity's masterpiece Crimson in that it is a lengthy single track that manages to retain interest throughout due to a constantly shifting narrative.  The end of the song bears very little resemblance to the beginning as the song ebbs and flows constantly through several movements.

Amputation Spree continues to impress me.  Their sound is constantly shifting and constantly evolving.  Maybe one day they should be signed to Relapse Records, despite what their Bandcamp page says.

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