Review - UNBURNT "Arcane Evolution"
Debuting from the great white north, Canada's Unburnt are rushing the scene with their fusion of Black and Death metals. Being formed by Bo Louther and Joe Mullen of Odium, John-Ryan Godfrey of We Are Human, and Eric Burnet of Samskaras. Bringing together some prime Canadian musicians who have worked to master their own styles can definitely cause a clash of sound, so the main question is, does it work?
The EP kicks off with "A Reason To Live", an intense blend of more Melodic Death Metal and a touch of Black Metal, or Blackened Death at the very least. The dual vocal style present throughout the song is interesting and actually very similar to that of Sinsaenum, which blends the typical growl associated with that of Death Metal and the more froggy, early Attila/Mayhem-esque Black Metal. The album progresses nicely, each song flows exactly as it should and this 15 minute record makes pacing look simple as it shifts into "Superiority Through Wisdom". What is easily a stand out part of the album is Burnet's ability to enunciate each of the words. Even though the vocals are on the harsher side, each of the words are clear and will practically make the listener want to scream along with "preserving the confidence and knowing that magic has no influence". The album closes out with the title track, "Arcane Evolution", which takes everything the listener has heard thus far and injects a touch of Deathcore, as the instrumentals edge into breakdown territory in some parts and Burnet has a section with a half sing, half croak. All things considered though, this little influence and experiment doesn't take away from the song at all though and was touched in with the perfect amount of care to not be a turn off to anyone who may not be a fan of the style.
While Unburnt may blast through each song, the pacing is perfect for those looking to headbang to something more melodic, infusing something along the intensity of Dimmu Borgir or Mayhem with the melody of The Black Dahlia Murder. Now, there's one complaint to be made and it's prevalent in every song except "Arcane Evolution" and that is the mixing of the guitar solos. Each of the other three songs feature some impressive guitar work, but it's mixed in so low that as the listener, you'll have to really listen and try to not let it get drowned out by the rest of the instrumentals. Minus that small hiccup though, this debut Unburnt EP is an impressive Melodic Blackened Death Metal release (that just rolls right off the tongue doesn't it). Arcane Evolution's blasphemous words definitely aroused my judgement and would definitely deserve an absolutely perfect score if not for the odd mixing of the guitar solos that takes away from the experience ever so slightly.