Blossoming From The Grave
If you’re looking for a groovy progressive death album with enough in the way of melody and atmosphere to keep you listening, then Missouri metallers Gourmand are the way to go. There’s a certain rawness to the quality of this record, but that doesn’t hurt the quality of the performance in any way. Rather than being excessively technical (even though one can certainly say that the drumming may feel that way) we have a band willing to incorporate synths, woodwind instruments, piano and all sorts of other bells and whistles in order to stay ahead of the prog/death game. There’s even a very sad number in “Redemption” that feels like an odd intermission and the end to a very depressing movie. I scratch my head and wonder why in the hell that’s there in the first place. It may have made more sense at the end of the album, rather than where the meat and heaviness is. I mean, it’s like watching a horror film, then watching a really sad chick flick in which a character dies and the romance is never requited, then going back to watch another horror film. I mean, 0:43 seconds into “Siren’s Song” and here I am back into death metal. So there’s some female vocals here too, but it’s still death metal. I mean, after I just mourned the death of my monkey Bubbles, now I’m thrust back into the death metal world again. In all honesty though, the female vocal section melds in pretty well with the rest of the song and I guess it sort of backs the sad death of the green ranger that came before it.
As I work my way through the tracks, I noticed that aside from some great musical acrobatics, there’s not ultimately too much here that I haven’t heard before. The saxophone would be great if I could hear it over the bass on “Empathy Gap” though. The end of the record comes in the form of “The First of My Name” which again feels out-of-place. Yep, “Reemption” could have been thrown right here. That way, if someone didn’t want to listen to it, they wouldn’t even have to hit the skip button, you know – being the lazy bastards that we are. In any case, while I’m not exactly floored by the performance, I still think that Gourmand offer up some solid death metal that will only get more refined with time. There are a lot of attempts made to mutate the song structures, but the band really seem to be at their best when they’re giving me the business, the brutal gory business of classic and somewhat progressive death metal. It definitely feels a bit more interesting than what comes out of the technical death metal scene these days though and I’ll give them kudos for that.
(10 Tracks, 44:00)
Purchase HERE (Bandcamp)