I came late to the party with this band I admit, having only got in to them in the past year I’ve been playing catch-up to their three previous albums and wondering how the hell I ever missed them, but what a wonderful time in their career to have discovered them!
‘Harmonic Confusion’ is Tardive Dyskinesia’s fourth full length release which has been teased for some time due to the early release of the lead single ‘The Electric Sun’ last year which is a great showcase for the album as a whole and encompasses many of the musical leanings which you will hear.
The album itself kicks off with a slow instrumental build up in ‘Insertion’ which toys and teases the listener before launching into the first full track ‘Fire Red Glass Heart’ which demands the listeners attention as it seamlessly marries disjointed riffs with both haunting and heavy vocals. This vocal variety is an amazing tool the band has in their arsenal and is used throughout the full length of the record and allows for some great dynamic shifts within the songs.
There is a good mix of musical ideas throughout with heavier songs such as ‘Triangulation Through Impasse’, ‘Self Destructive Haze’ and ‘Thread of life’ (the latter having an unexpected yet beautifully blended string section in the second half) being built on crushing yet groove laden riffs whilst the tracks ‘Concentric Waves’ and ‘Savoir Complex’ slower paces allow for more space within the music which gives each member of the band a chance to fully make their place on the album. The inclusion of a sax solo toward the end of ‘Savior Complex’ works perfectly with the feel of the tune and makes a stand-out moment for me on the album.
Sure the music is great, the sound is full and varied but do they actually have any memorable songs…again, yes! Each track has some great melodic vocal hooks, be they heavy or clean and there are some great anthemic moments such as in ‘Echoes 213’ and ‘The Electric Sun’ which will have you singing along but are never trite, bolted on or cheesy.
Overall, most songs clock in around 5-6 mins, have a variety of vocal styles, crushing and disjointed riffs flawlessly blending into one another, some great rythmical changes which allow for both space and urgency, many twists and turns within each song which keeps the listener interested and wondering just where each song will carry them, and its well worth the journey!
In summary ‘Harmonic Confusion’ is a hugely impressive album from a band I would recommend everyone takes note of. Fans of Mastodon, Isis and Baroness will find much to love here as will any self-respecting lover of deliciously heavy Prog Metal! Tardive Dyskinesia will most certainly be getting a lot of airplay on the Prog.Metal.Madness! radio show!
‘Harmonic Confusion’ is due out on September 9th and is available for order here: http://tardivedyskinesia.bigcartel.com
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