|Review: Qrixkuor - Poison Palinopsia|
Label: Dark Descent Records
Year released: 2021
Genre: Death Metal
Review online: November 2, 2021
Reviewed by: Micah.Ram
Rated 4/5 (80%) (4 Votes)
Two tracks sitting in at almost 49 minutes... And it's not a Doom Metal release?! Talk about ambitious stuff here! This is a genuine Death Metal release by the band Qrixkuor full of speed, blast beats, and furious energies, as well as doomy bits thrown in for good measure. With that being the case, the two tracks element here is quite fascinating. Let us dig into what this record is all about.
Poison Palinopsia begins with an orchestral soundscape dominated by the sounds of a damning pulse of the timpani surrounded by faint and rumbling low brass playing. The band enters seamlessly as it meets an end in a way that made such a contrasting instrumentation not so contrasting after all. This is due to a unique quality which fascinated me throughout the whole release, which is that instrumentally it feels as if everything the band accomplishes on this record is somehow connected to the orchestral segment. But it goes beyond that. Throughout these two lengthy tracks, there are short moments of the orchestra making additional entries. The music from the orchestra and the band always matches energies. This gives the album a higher replay value as listeners who stay for the details may begin to start connecting these two elements in the album.
As far as the band's playing, it is varied and busy, sometimes deceptively. The levels of sound and chaos on this album are sometimes less obvious until you really focus on each instrument. At the moment the band starts after the first orchestral segment they hold a Doom-metal pace for a few minutes full of tremolo picking and dense textures. It is cavernous, although not to the same extent as say, Cerebral Rot's latest album. The first track suddenly bursts into high gear at around 5:31, and the blasting energy and furious riffing could not be more exciting in the way it fits here. Over time, the pace changes frequently throughout these two tracks, displaying both high speed and Doom-paced sides of the band with high quality. The many guitar solos are always a highlight of the album, especially near the end of the first track, "Serpentine Susurrus- Mother's Abomination."
With two tracks, it's hard to just name favorite songs. Rather, it is quite like listening to and analyzing a symphony by one of the great symphony writers in that it is more likely to have favorite moments within each song. My favorite moment may be on the second track, "Recrudescent Malevolence- Mother's Illumination," at the 16:06 mark. It is a short-lived moment with a harmonically simple and familiar structure of descending harmonies with very flavorful lead guitar action. The fact that it is short-lived leaves me wanting more, but at the same time gives me more incentive to replay a section or even the whole track again. Another moment I really enjoyed which was quite clever was the orchestral interjection that happens in the first track at 12:41. This orchestral segment features violins on top of the timpani and horns, playing a maniacal burst of notes that almost sounds like a crowd of laughter of evil intentions. The way the band works around these orchestral bits is always mirrored in energy and musical energies, making it always a welcomed feature.
As for me, I always have high expectations when I see the label Dark Descent Records in connection to a release. If you like extreme metal, there is a ton of value in their catalogue and it should be explored. This record may break some people with its individual track run times, but those who enjoy an album-listening experience like myself will get a lot out of this release. Interestingly, both tracks happen to be 24 minutes long, with only 20 seconds of difference in timing. I wonder if that was intentional or accidental. I would imagine it was planned that way, as it would be quite the coincidence when dealing with songs of these lengths. For an incredibly well thought out album of Death Metal that shifts between multiple gears and is full of tricks and hidden goodies to be revealed over multiple listens, look no further than Qrixkuor's Poison Palinopsia
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