Kardashev – Peripety (Subliminal Groove Records)

Sunday, 29th November 2015
Rating: 8.5/10

For many, the term “deathcore” ends up being tossed about much like a dirty word, instantly sullying the band in question. Regardless of your take on the genre, it does have its innovators. Those who use it as a springboard to advance themselves into something different. Arizona’s Kardashev should be on your list of bands to know for what they have accomplished with Peripety.

A random night plugging away on Bandcamp lead to this discovery, with the minimalist, lack of artwork being the gateway to clicking play. At times coming off like the bastard child of Fallujah and Aegaeon, Kardashev is all about atmosphere. That gorgeous clean guitar sound is a key factor here, as is the sleek and futuristic sounding production which gives the album a dreamy and floaty vibe. But the space-y atmosphere gives way to moments of thundering heaviness as well, enhanced by some ultra-low gutturals. The back and forth nature between the primal aggression and sweeping atmosphere is very eloquently done – really taking the listener on a journey over the course of the album. It’s a delicate balance to keep these two pieces in the proper flow, and Kardashev has no qualms about maintaining this. Some highlights include the ripper that is “Sopor,” the more melodic death-inclined “Conscium,” and the dreamy landscapes of “Aurora.” But this is an album that should be soaked in, taking it from start to finish to really give it the attention it deserves.

Ignoring whatever genre tag you want to slap Kardashev with, know that Perpety is an album well worth seeking out. The use of atmosphere in extreme metal is something that has really been building momentum (Wrvth, Rivers of Nihil, the bands mentioned above), and Kardashev are just as intoxicating in their clever mix. Shouldn’t be too long before you are seeing this band’s stock increase.

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