BAND/AUTHOR:

PSYCHOTIC WALTZ

(UNITED STATES)

TITLE:
THE GOD-SHAPED VOID (2020)
LABEL:
INSIDEOUT MUSIC
GENRE:
PROGRESSIVE METAL

"Twenty-four years after his latest album, Psychotic Waltz makes a comeback that we didn't believe in anymore with a "The God-Shaped Void" that we wouldn't have expected to be of such high quality."
NUNO777 - 07.02.2020 - (0) minds from our readers - (0) comment(s)
4/5
It is notable that at the end of this decade a number of cult progressive metal bands that were thought to be buried are making a comeback. The case of Psychotic Waltz is remarkable for the loyalty of its musicians, its status as a pioneer of American progressive metal in the late 80s, and the twenty-four year wait.

The return of the Americans is made through the big door with the signature on the unavoidable label InsideOut Music and the pencil stroke of the unequalled Travis Smith who signs a magnificent cover illustration. However on the paper nothing seemed simple for the rebirth of the natives of El Cajon (the city of the Taylor guitars) who had left the scene on two albums criticized by a fringe of aficionados. And It's not certain that "The God-Shaped Void" is better received  because the album takes up part of the logic of melodic efficiency of "Mosquito" and "Bleeding" with Heavy thrusts with a softened progressive charge. The band puts aside some of its fundamentals by opting for a massive sound far from the underground brutality of yesteryear and by erasing the avant-gardist dimension of its compositions to keep, in a fragmented way, only a few psychedelic atmospheres. The same goes for the flute, this original instrument associated with Buddy Lackey (now Devon Graves), which we will hear only a few seconds at the very beginning and later on two tracks ('Pull the String' and 'Demystified'). But if Psychotic Waltz takes the risk to cut himself off from part of his initial base, he'll certainly make new fans with this record that is both affordable and musically dense. 

Affordable because Psychotic Waltz has worked on the melodic efficiency of his songs to make them into unifying anthems, judging by the number of heady choruses and verses ('Pull the String' and its Ghost side, 'The Fallen', 'All the Bad Men', 'Sisters of the Dawn') and by the punchy constructions of some of the tracks ('Back to Black', 'All the Bad Men', 'Pull the String'). "The God-Shaped Void" is nonetheless a complete record with common rhythmic variations, acoustic interludes that cleanse the air sometimes full of psychedelic vapours ('Devils And Angels', 'In the Silence', 'The Fallen'), heavy formats bordering on grunge ('In the Silence') and stoner ('All the Bad Men') or more elaborate developments (the progressive 'Sisters of the Dawn' or the intense 'The Fallen'). After so many years, the soul of the band remains and is embodied in rich vocal performances imbued with the mystery of Devon Grave's signature (his Geoff Tate-like intonations in 'The Fallen'). This return is also a sign of the regained central positioning of the guitar, which makes its mark on the riffs, the numerous soli full of feeling ('Devils and Angels', 'Back to Black') or the expressivity of the notes held ('Stranded', 'While the Spiders Spin').

One might have thought the joints would be a little sore and the muscles ankylosed after so many years of inactivity, but Psychotic Waltz is in a resplendent shape. The band even signs a record that has all the keys to remain in the memories and fill future concerts with real anthems. Of course the originality and the sharpness of the beginnings give way to more classicism and roundness, helped in this by a production stamped Jens Bogren, but the obvious musical qualities and the impeccable interpretations produce a very solid and exciting metal album from start to finish.

More informations on http://www.psychoticwaltz.com/



SIMILAR BANDS:
DREAM THEATER, PROTOTYPE, FATES WARNING, GHOST, MEKONG DELTA, QUEENSRŸCHE

TRACK LISTING:
01. Devils and Angels
02. Stranded
03. Back to Black
04. All the Bad Men
05. The Fallen
06. While the Spiders Spin
07. Pull the String
08. Demystified
09. Season of the Swarm
10. Sisters of the Dawn
11. In the Silence


LINEUP:
Brian McAlpin: Guitares
Dan Rock: Guitares / Claviers
Devon Graves: Chant
Norm Leggio: Batterie
Ward Evans: Basse


TAGS:
90's, Groovy, Heavy, Old School, Psychedelic, Dark, Technical
 
 
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