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Saturday, July 30, 2016

Review: Oracles - Miserycorde

There’s a new band in town and boy do they kick some ass! Oracles consists of Sven de Caluwé (Aborted) and Sanna Salou (ex-Dimlight) on vox, Ken Bedene (Aborted) on drums, Mendel bij de Leij (Aborted) and Steve Miller (ex-System Divide) on guitars, and Andrei Aframov (ex-System Divide) on bass. Miserycorde is categorized as a melodic death metal band, but it’s so much more than that, let me tell you that right now.

To me, personally, Miserycorde is one of the most original releases I have heard in a while. It is a record that brings together the best of several genres into something I would almost want to call something completely new. In short, you could say that Oracles’ debut is almost like an Aborted record, minus the gorey, horror interludes and samples, and with added female vocals and drama, but I would be selling them way short saying that. There’s *almost* literally something for everyone to enjoy: melody, razorsharp riffs, facemelting solo’s, harsh beats, and of course Sven’s awesome vox. BUT, here’s the catch. Female vocals. Yes, I can almost hear all death/thrash/black/etc fans among you going ‘’Oh, fuck off!’’.

Album opener ‘’An Adagio for the Callous’’ is more or less the common introduction song. Except that it ends at a point where you expect it to intensify and really go into beast mode. Still a great song, starts off with dark, echoing guitars and you’re introduced to a faded female voice. BAM! Everything goes off at once, forming a perfect storm of intense drums, beautifully performed vocals by Sanna Salou (seriously, she keeps giving me goosebumps throughout the album) and dramatic synthesizers. The song abruptly flows into ‘’The Tribulation of Man’’. A song that, at first glance, could be identified as an Aborted track, until you are once more reminded that Oracles has two vocalists. It’s a song that starts off real fast and then slows down into some more delicate parts. Amazing solo as well, it’s not your typical death-metal riffage, but it’s beautiful as fuck. ‘’Catabolic (I Am)’’ is in my opinion the most powerful song on the album, along with the album closer ‘’We, the Indifferent’’. In contrast to the majority of this album ‘Catabolic’ is a track that doesn’t really slow down, it stays powerful for almost the entire length of it, even when Sanna is on vox. After a facemelting song, the blastbeat kicks in, and at this point I couldn’t believe how good female vox could be combined with aggressive blastbeats of this level. Amazing way to end a song. ‘’Remnants Echo’’ is the ‘sensitive’ song off the record. It is a great display of how theatrical, yet heavy Oracles can be. It’s slow paced, there’s a piano, you know the drill. The heavy parts are good for some ear/skingasms, and apart from that it’s just really good, qualitatively.

That’s it. I’ve already spoiled too much. I urgently implore all of you to try out this records, and others like it. I know that female vocals are a taboo among some groups of fans, I wasn’t a big fan of it either, but this stuff right here it’s groundbreaking. It’s heavy as fuck, the whole thing was recorded and mastered beautifully and it manages to bring together the best of multiple subgenres, which is rarely a success, in my opinion. Also, Miserycorde features performances by members of Scar Symmetry, Arch Enemy, Nevermore and The Black Dahlia Murder and includes a cover of Marilyn Manson’s ‘’The Beautiful People’’, which is kinda weird, but does have its good moments.


Written by Nino Milillo

Oracles Official Website
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