Ashes Of Ares is a fine collaboration of ex-Iced Earth vocalist Matt Barlow and guitarist Freddie Vidales and ex-Nevermore drummer Van Williams. They come from bands with a great audience acceptance and there are no doubts about their musicianship.
My favourite Greek band of all times returns with its third release, the most critical one in a band’s career. After two very unique albums as debut ”Distorting Point Of View” and especially its follow up ”The Sea Of See Through Skins” which raised a lot of expectations, the guys from Athens play the bet of their lives so far and suceed in creating a great and multi-sided album which keeps their basic elements to the front, but also adds new soundscapes and shows their maturity and evolution. Avoiding to fall into the trap of repetition, Tardive Dyskinesia show the way for many bands to differentiate and always look forward without sounding commercial or cheesy.
The boys start this ambitious journey to world recognition with the seven minute opus ”Empty Frames” and if you have heard the two previous albums, a big smile sticks in your face. Not only you listen to the familiar neurotic Meshugging style, but you can sense the additions on their material from the very first moment. Little games with the vocals which sound more expressive than ever, the guitarists cutting through the veins and the arteries and especially the rhythm section in the best possible performance. The pulse of the bass steps into the great drum fills and the neck can’t help but setting itself on fire for the next 51 minutes.
”The Chase Home” and ”Time Turns Planets” could easily become the new hits of the band, because of their somehow shortest duration. Especially the second is rather experimental and could be a good hint of how the band could sound like in the future. On the other hand, ”Smells Like Fraud” and ”Prehistoric Man” keep the level and energy rather high and make you believe that the guys did their best record so far. It is not only until the short interlude ”Indicator” eases things a bit, this is the time you understand that the first half of the album has already stepped upon you and has made you one with the floor without recovery.
The next three compositions add more quantity and quality on the album, ”Circling Around The Unknown” is the hidden diamond of the album, ”We, The Cancer” is easily the most diverse and ”dangerous” of all the tracks, it changes moods just like you do while listening to it and becomes the band’s most special song to date. The shortest track of the album ”Failed Document” gets perfectly tied with the closing ”Limiting The Universe”. A haunting track ideal to close a great album like this one, it makes you ease a bit before you put in order all the pictures and feelings that passed rapidly before you the previous minutes.
The band not only made it’s most different and unique sounding album, but can also claim that many other bands could follow their path of change. I could not expect anything else and less from a band that has played with bands like Meshuggah and Dillinger Escape Plan and not only didn’t get stagefright, but also fucked everything up. The two previous albums made me fall in love with them and their sound (just imagine a Greek band playing like this some years ago, we’d only laugh in the thought), this third masterpiece simply showed that no other band from Greece can reclaim their throne in my heart. The title of the album says half the truth, this is not static at all, but evolution came much more fast forward than you can imagine.
|Track List||Line Up||
01. Empty Frames
02. The Chase Home
03. Smells Like Fraud
04. Time Turns Planets
05. Prehistoric Man
07. Circling Around the Unknown
08. We, the Cancer
09. Failed document
10. Limiting the Universe
Manthos S. – Vocals, Guitar
Steve L. – Guitar
Kornilious K. – Bass
Nick A. – Drums
Petros N. – Guitar