Published Feb 03, 2016Their moniker — taken from Gorguts' pivotal 1998 album — notwithstanding, German technical death metallers Obscura have a lot to live up to. They've done admirably since their 2002 inception, with releases that combine technical complexity and progressive structures with memorable, groove-filled rhythms. Their latest album, Akróasis, is the followup to 2011's Omnivium, and it retains their approach and impeccable musicianship while adding fresh, modern elements to the mix.
Greek for "hearing" or "listening," the nearly hour-long Akróasis is dark and aggressive throughout, featuring frantic chugging riffs, pummelling drum blasts and harsh vocals. However, Obscura have incorporated more avant-garde and jazz fusion elements into their sound, as well as beautifully melodic leads and atmospheric sounds that add an ethereal touch to the album. Poetic, philosophical themes tie everything together, making Akróasis a thoroughly impressive, diverse and well-produced release that even non-tech-death aficionados can get into. (Relapse)