Question – Doomed Passages (Chaos Records)

Monday, 5th May 2014
Rating: 7.5/10

We truly must be coming towards the end of an era where all of the brutal and “metal” names have been taken.  If someone were to come up to you and say, “My favorite band is Question,” would you take it as trickery where you had to guess their favorite band?  When you hear the name, Question, does it really speak death metal to you?  Well, even if your thoughts on their name brings up a question mark, there is nothing questionable about their ability to play some good, solid death metal (sorry, the puns just write themselves).

To boil things down to the most basic, Question plays some traditional, yet timeless, death metal.  One can draw some comparisons to their country-mates The Chasm, as well as Incantation and Immolation.  The production helps give it a fitting older touch, but retains a ‘clear enough to make everything out’ vibe and keeps a needed evil tone to the guitars.  Question seems to work best when laying things out at the mid-tempo to slower ranges, allowing that dark flair to ooze out without feeling rushed and gives those moments of unbridled fury (see “Universal Path of Disgrace”) standout with more power.  Things even get a little bit trippy and occult with the short instrumental “Through the Vacuous River,” giving a brief respite from the dark descent of the remaining tracks.  Closing number “Departure” also gives some time for reflection as things come to an end.

Well-written death metal that proceeds at just the pace it wants to is the name of the game on Doomed Passages.  The only exception that seemed to fall a bit flat was the lengthy “Bitter Gleam of Inexistence” but otherwise an impressive debut from Question.  Albeit a tad familiar in its pathway, Doomed Passages establishes a baseline that will allow Question to formulate its own story more as time progresses.

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