An important point in anybody's musical listening/purchasing career is when they first realize that there are LPs and EPs. The difference between the two is that the EP, extended play, is just a handful of songs, while the LP, long play, is a full complete album usually lasting between 20-60 minutes depending on the genre. What I soon realized was that EPs were just snippets of an upcoming LP and usually pointless when the LP came out. Exceptions are out there though, such as In The Midst Of Bloodied Soil by With Passion which comes off as a full sounding device with a submarine, shark teeth, and hella big torpedoes.
We are set off into the deep blue sea with "The Scorpion's Dance". Ignoring anything I knew before listening to this album, from this song alone, I wouldn't be too sure what was in store with really moody keyboards that make one feel like they are sitting in a desolate church. Then when you start to feel comfortable you hear noises coming from the shadows. You're scared shitless because something is about to happen, but you just don't know what exactly. As you step on the escalator moving in the direction of the exit, "Darkness Doth Bring Mortality" quickly snaps at you.
You are quickly pinched with pant loads of pinch harmonics that just squeal all over your face. What you hear is definitely metal, due to the drums that launch skyward at lightning speeds, the guitarists' fingers' that move at godlike porn star speeds and the demonic screams that almost growl in hell-like angles. You're starting to get a faster At The Gates feel when all of a sudden the tempo drops and twinkly keyboards rush in. The synth sounding keyboards add an orchestrated atmospheric aura with a black metal feel reminiscent of something like Emperor. What definitely separates this from that black metal sound is how well the recording amplifies every instrument separately from one another instead of everything running together. It's especially nice how the double bass was recorded, where each kick doesn't sound like a bird taking a crap (as Alex C compared most metalcore bass drums as sounding). I'm assuming he was describing that ticking noise that they usually do'well this sounds more organic and how an actual drum would sound. More importantly than this little detail is how fast he is able to play, which is some of the fastest metal drumming I've ever heard, reminiscent of Cryptopsy and Origin. Speaking of those two hella crucial bands, With Passion almost comes across as a more listenable version of those, probably due to their blatant melodic overtones.
At this point we know we're in METAL territory, from the skeletons strewn across barbed wire to the bleeding carcasses battling dinosaurs. And as the tracks continue we hear more and more fast guitars and even faster drums. What's cool though is how the songs have tons of parts that break up any metal monotonomy and it's just fun to listen to the talent, either from the phat riffage or electric finger tapping solos, while the bass grooves along at the same rate which is pretty thumbs-up worthy in my book. The keyboards that flood every song really increase the chill factor without sounding like Bleeding Through or some other lame nu metalcore band. It's epic too, not in an Envy type of way though, more of a He-Man: Master Of The Universe way.
Finally, the first chord of "The Prophecies of Hellfire" rings and we're on our way to the end of our journey into sheer rockdom. The notes in this particular song never reach the loud levels, but instead cool off in the kind of song your parents would like. There's an almost jazzy feel as our armor glistens. This ending helps created a great EP, a complete portrait. Now, if only the day when the LP comes out was today, then I'd be the happiest boy/man ever (ignoring that boy that was saved by a gorilla when he fell off a bridge in that zoo).
8.6 / 10
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