The RMR deck crew always keeps an eye on that Extreme Metal radar. The one that displays news from the pit, where these records dwell. And these days the trve spirit is a tad difficult to get by. We do get our fair share of posers and wannabes, of course.
But often weeks fly by without any really rough metal on the menu. Which can be good, too, of course. There’s much more to this metal multiverse than only them total brutalities.
So, it is good news that the cold winds from the East started blowing. And with them arrived Second to Sun from Russia with their newest dark offering. Yep, already, you heard that right. Which – of course – raises the age-old infamous specter of too early too soon. Yet again, this is a band on a mission and they seem to be on a roll these days.
Just one short year ago we covered their latest record The Walk from this decidedly talented bunch. And it was already a piece to behold with their untamed and truly aggressive delivery. Right up the alley of the masters of dissonance like Dodecahedron or Cryptae. Or any others of these critters running that specific gauntlet.
Now, our Russian friends are back with Legacy, their newest album. And – as is the custom – StS back this record up with that sturdy instrumental version that you should not miss either.
Legacy boasts a lot of added heaviness this time around. The meaty riffing and this aggressive rasp will just eat away at your immortal soul until you are ready to give in to the Dark Lord. All of that disturbing and starkly brutal assault delivers with a mix somewhere in between Dark Portrait, Zeit, and Dani Filth’s terrible screams.
Devil already sets the tone with a deliciously chilling set of hauntings and dissonant guitar work, made whole by some Dark Mirror ov Tragedy‘s hallmark key tones. Which, by the time the Confessional of the Black Penitent puts its steely hooks into your mortal flesh, will have become part of the listening DNA of this record. Only that this penitent is truly black and desolate, and will only spit you out once the next track hits.
You see, many of them Extreme Metal partisans will single-mindedly drive in one direction only. Steely and often ice-cold metal it is, certainly. But those often shove this one-size-fits-all down your throat, come devil or armageddon.
Not so with Second to Sun.
Legacy gorges with variation. The band still commits all the metal atrocities it can think of but does so in style. And I agree, this overt use of keys sometimes is cringe-worthy. But if this synthie shit serves as some sort of a silver lining, as stepping stones to abject riffing and rasping, I can actually buy into it.
And that’s exactly what StS did. The record will pummel you with all sorts of flavors. From thrashy, speedy riffs to doom and desolation. Down to the distinct industrial taste of No Need To Be Afraid Now. Just to end the session with this Melodic Black Metal piece called Raida. And this after the Cradle of Filth soundalike called Once Upon a Time in Russia. Which – by the way – is exceedingly well done with its savage fiendishness and total raspy aggression. Even Dani Filth can be improved upon, it seems.
Well, by the Unholy Metal Cow and its terrible minions. We got ourselves yet another pretty stellar piece of blazing hot and truly black steely metal.
Our fears that Legacy would end in malevolent disaster were unfounded. This is one helluva follow-on to The Walk, and it does not lack in substance nor innovation. The unforgiving nature of StS’s tune, the relentless rasps, the almost inhuman riffs, keys, and acoustics all lead to this darkly potent primeval soup that defines this record. If anything, Legacy is proof that Extreme Metal can almost be progressive. If this is a term we should use here at all.
Yet finally, Second to Sun managed to kick things up a few notches. In a way, this record showcases how to do an Extreme Metal record without just driving down that sad one-way street by continually beating a long-dead horse.
And Legacy does that extremely well.
Record Rating: 8/10| Label: Self-Released | Web: Official Site
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