Apparatus – Apparatus (Lavadome Productions)

Sunday, 15th November 2015
Rating: 8/10

Based on 2015 alone, whenever an album comes out through Lavadome Productions you can be assured it’s worth looking into. We’ve been given Ad Nauseam, Heaving Earth, and Destroying Divinity among others, and Apparatus is the latest through the gates. Dissonant death metal that’s dirty enough to make your skin crawl is the name of the game, and it appears that Apparatus know very well how to do it.

The two biggest sources Apparatus seems to be drawing from on their self-titled affair is that of Portal and Ulcerate. And they lean a bit more towards the former than the later in many regards. The overall creepiness factor and unsettling vibe in the tone, the dissonant structures, and doom-y crawls give plenty of nods but don’t look at Apparatus as a mere copycat. There are many highlights and perhaps unexpected moments as you go through the disc. A clear highlight is that of “Dissecting Temporal Dimensions to Afflict the Abyssi of Chronos,” which switches gears from dissonance to almost prayer-like chanting mid-way through the track. There’s also the eerie piano of “Spheres,” the crushing death metal riffing of “King God” (which practically abandons the dissonance entirely), and the chunky doom of “Prayer.” Some special attention is worth shining on the trio of rather disturbing instrumental pieces, “Sermon” that break up the album and bask in eerie atmosphere.

Embracing their Lovecraftian inspirations, Apparatus is practically essential listening for those fans of Portal and Ulcerate, not to mention the younger crop of bands like Ad Nauseam and Abyssal. It’s an album that is sure to keep you on your toes and be pleasantly (or disturbingly, depending on your mindset) surprised at the little extras that consistently make it through the dissonant designs. Another nice pull from Lavadome.

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