Like a small but increasing number of their peers, Valediction have gone all out for this self released album – exquisite sound, great art, super digipack duplication, the works. As usual with bands that go to these kinds of lengths, there’s a reason: they have the confidence that their music backs it up.
Massive, polished, modern metal certainly isn’t something Ireland’s coming down with. The bottom line is that Valediction could be on the modern day Napalm or Nuclear Blast rosters tomorrow. Whether or not you think that’s a good thing stylistically is open to debate. The fact is though that this sits easily side by side with much of their output.
There are hints to latter day Dark Tranquility, but perhaps also to Rotting Christ too – their keyboard swathed, bang up to the minute sound is gleaming, bold and heavy. Just get your ears round that title track. Taking a cue from Rammstein with its bleepy, stomping hook, it nonetheless sounds seamlessly metallic.
‘Transcendant’ keeps it going. The best thing about this track is its development, and that’s a rare capability at this early stage of the game. They really keep this track moving, building by increments throughout its five minutes upon an idea that was great anyhow. I’m even hearing good old Faith No More in there, right at the core of the track in its keyboardy massiveness.
Great as this all is, it could all do with a bit more varity in the vocal department. The hoarse croaking does its bit, but doesnt convey much in terms of threat or jeaporady. That’s what will lift them in times to come. For now they have to focus on getting more of it in.
Many of these tracks are quintessential rock club dance floor fillers in the making. That takes some songwritig, and Valediction are right on top of their brief.
Is there a message in it? Not that I can hear. Though the majority of the album is undebiably quality riffwork, that leaves the sense that perhaps its just a shade superficial. And that might be so. But with tracks like ‘Seige Of Dis’, who’s really arguing.
Stomping metal, perfect for the dark fug and coloured lights of the club is what this is all about. That’s a major achievement in my book and not one that needs explained away. Fantastic bass and drum work prop it all up, while the meaty production really lets it breathe.
This ought to be on every major European metal playlisting within the year. I would be surprised, nay flabbergasted if it isnt picked up. If this band can get their act together tour wise, they’re our next export. Watch this space.
4.1 / 5 – Earl Grey ::: 08/05/11