Review: “New Load Continue” by Geschlecht

In following up up their 2016 self-titled debut EP, Northern Italian’s GESCHLECHT wanted a Producer who matched their ambition and artistic vision. Not afraid to merge Industrial vibes and Extreme Metal Amedeo Finati (vocals), Amedeo Casale (guitar), Edoardo Volpato (bass), Fabio Speroni (drums) opted for Lacuna Coil drummer Richard Meiz (also in Genus Ordinis Dei). The album narrates the story of a player trapped in a videogame. The band comment: “The protagonist gets swallowed up and has to complete the questline of the game by himself. His task will be to break the curse that plagues the 5 great warriors of the game world who will accompany him throughout his journey. The curse brings the warriors in a constant state of inebriation, depriving them of their powers as well and rendering them unable to perform their duty, or defeat the evil demons and gods. Only a gem¬†imbued with the power of the blood moon can break the spell. The player will have to travel the game world to find the gem, in a race against a prophecy that announces the rise of a new God”.

There are a few meanings to the translation of the band name and opening track of the debut album “Geschlecht” depending on context but the most fitting one is “Race“. A cinematic orchestral infusion with synths and programming is very much the video game soundscape the band promises before the guitars come into play. Amedeo Finati’s vocals are like those of an instinctive predatory beast and as the music plays out with some interesting solo work from Amedeo Casale it’s easy to see that those vocals are the heaviest element. “Cursed” literally picks up where the opening track left off with bright lead flourishes illuminating the mid tempo chugging riffs. There are hints and the influence of In Flames on the musical side but not on those vocals which are more in tune with Melodic Death Metal than anything else. Pre-release single “Bloodmoon” uses some distortion on the vocal killing fields, continuing the injection of bright melodic lead riffs and solos over rhythmic patterns that could be darker than they actually are. How they’re going to carry the duel guitar attack off live with a single player remains to be seen. “The Power Of Five” takes a few riffs from the Soil playbook and has a big sing-a-long chorus without the cleans that is one of the stand out moments because it doesn’t complicate matters with too much intricacy.

A Rammstein esq spoken word bridge in the opening verse of “The Prophecy” is well worked, as is a short and sweet solo and another big chorus perhaps has the making of the band. The second solo is more of a virtuoso piece and ends up underpinning the following verse of fist pumping attitude. Taking things into Metalcore territory with an absolute ripper of an introduction of speed riffs at breakneck pace “One Mind” has to drop some of the energy to allow for the ferocious animalistic maul of Finati’s roar. A gang chant is a nice touch and what you’re left with is another slick stand out cut. Meloncholy and the infinite sadness take hold for all of 10 seconds at the start of “Legion XXI”. It threatens to be your archetype mid album soft underbelly but instead steps up with some solid slabs of rhythmic chugs and when that big slow breakdown hits, it’s a wrecking ball moment accompanied by a gutteral roar. “Home Sweet Home” brings the bounce with some playful post chorus riffs while sticking to the bands core sound during the main sections. There is an industrial programmed breakdown in this one which adds a point of difference and for some reason we’re reminded of Scar Symmetry¬†while we listen to the album as a whole…

A more progressive introduction to “To Transcend” which has Nintendo videogame guitar tones in the solo work breaks out from the blood and thunder verse adding “Zelda 3: A Link To The Past” and perhaps a touch of Power Metal to the mix. As that fades off, “Game Over” fades in with some intricate melody before bursting into life with some savage uncleans and a Tech-Metal polyrhythmic section. “I’m not your Monster so f*** you all!” is the repeated sing-a-long moment that is going to go down brilliantly at live shows. “Survivor” has the expected and fun “Bleigh!” moment, but it’s so short and sharp that it could be missed. The vocals have more in common with Randy Blythe of Lamb Of God than anything else and the forum notion that this album could be for fans of Fear Factory is laughable at best. It’s better than a chunk of the newer material they’ve had to offer and they share no proving grounds. “An Infinite Nightmare” has a Progressive Metal break with some dark whispers and buried screamed uncleans that have a distinctly German style despite being Italian. The biggest surprise is the sudden cut dead at the end of the track because it seems to have another verse and chorus in its legs. An album hard to fault, it leaves a branding iron impression on your skull that burns hotter with repeated listens [7.5/10]

Track listing

1. Geschlecht
2. Cursed
3. Bloodmoon
4. The Power Of Five
5. The Prophecy
6. One Mind
7. Legion XXI
8. Home Sweet Home
9. To Transcend
10. Game Over
11. Survivor
12. An Infinite Nightmare

“New Load Continue” by Geschlecht is out now via Time To Kill Records and available over at bandcamp

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