Pyogenesis – A Kingdom to Disappear (AFM)

Monday, 20th February 2017
Rating: 8/10

One thing’s for certain with Germany’s Pyogenesis: They stick out like a sore thumb. In a career marked by seismic shifts in sound, going from death/Goth to pop/rock in the ’90s, then taking a hiatus from 2002 to 2015, Pyogenesis are anything but predictable. The band’s 2015 comeback A Century in the Curse of Time demonstrated enough melodic flair and quirkiness to warrant interest in their newest platter, the equally-as-enjoyable A Kingdom to Disappear.

Call the band’s sound a clutter, but main dude/primary songwriter Flo V. Schwarz certainly knows his way around a memorable vocal hook, like on “Every Man for Himself and God Against All” and the heavily-layered “I Have Seen My Soul,” two songs that peel off radio-friendly choruses. Therefore, it wouldn’t be a stretch to think of Pyogenesis as a commercial Goth band parading as a metal band, which is upheld on the Type O Negative-like “It’s Too Late (A Kingdom to Disappear),” which translates as the band’s mini-homage to the much-missed Peter Steele. (Note: The only thing missing from the song is deep, Dracula vocals.)

Additional sonic wandering comes about on “That’s When Everybody Gets Hurt,” which would be great for an ’80s movie soundtrack, yet is intoxicating at the same time. And per the band’s habit of throwing curveballs, “Blaze, My Northern Flame” finds death metal vocals introduced into the mix, further differentiating an album that has no foundation to speak of.

That being said, Pyogenesis are without question an acquired taste. The band’s inability to stay with one sound and/or style may be a hindrance for some, but the reward with A Kingdom to Disappear comes in the variety of the songs. If anything else, A Kingdom to Disappear validates Pyogenesis’s current stance as one of metal’s true ire-raisers and annoyances. A blessing and a curse.

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