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Sunday, March 20, 2016

Review: Sacred Seal - Incarnation

I believe that all metal can roughly be categorised in 2 types. The kind that you sit back and listen to, that works best when you really listen and savour all the passages. That takes you somewhere emotionally and that you have to listen to a few times before all the details fall into place. The other kind is the one that makes you want to get up and head bang, air guitar, fall off furniture and party with your friends.

The French band Sacred Seal's debut album Incarnation is a rare breed. At first glance it seems like the party kind of heavy metal but when you dig a little deeper an extra layer unveils itself.

Sacred Seal's music could be described as female fronted heavy metal with influences from occult rock and folk rock. Think of a blend of Judas Priest, Ghost and Blue Oyster Cult without sounding like any of those bands. The albums concept is loosely based upon the struggles man has to endure in order to seek deliverance. Musically this is done by having the songs grow gradually darker as the album progresses. Where the first few tracks are more straight up heavy metal, the later part of the album gets more of an occult rock vibe with slower and moodier songs. This keeps the album diverse and interesting from start to finish. the best part of the album is in the middle where the blend is most noticeable. Standout tracks for me are the songs Me, Myself and I with its fast riffs and catchy chorus and Psychosis with its manic vocal lines by Nicky Daymond.

The beauty of the music is in the details, the clean intro's, the unique and sometimes haunting vocals and the heaviness of the guitar riffs. All the songs are interesting enough to not get stale after a few listens. Nothing extremely new or different is brought but that is not a problem because as mentioned before not everything has to be complicated. When you eat a cheeseburger you know it's not a complicated dish. But it is quite tasty because the few ingredients work together in great fashion. The same holds true for Incarnation. Ultimately Sacred Seal brings a new spin on an old idea and makes it interesting enough to enjoy. I will definitely be spinning this record in the future. As an added tip. Check out Sacred Seals website for the lyrics and a better understanding of what the music is about.

Score 75/100

Tracklist:
1. "Kama"
2. "Venus Star"
3. "The Sphinx Riddle's
4. "Evilution"
5. "Flow of Oblivion"
6. "Me, Myself and I"
7. "Chains of Slavery"
8. "Psychosis"
9. "House of Sin"
10. "Juda's Call"
11. "Over the Abyss"
12. "Holy See"

Written by Doctor Chris

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