Review 1811 : Scar Symmetry – The Singularity (Phase II: Xenotaph) – English

Scar Symmetry ends its silence with the release of The Singularity (Phase II: Xenotaph), its seventh album.


Nine years after the first phase, Per Nilsson (guitar/keyboards/vocals, Nocturnal Rites, Kaipa), Henrik Ohlsson (drums, Apocryphon, ex-Diabolical), Roberth Karlsson (harsh vocals, Facebreaker, Ironmaster, ex-Edge of Sanity), Lars Palmqvist (clean vocals, The Hangmans Sorrow) and Ben Ellis (guitar, ex-Bloodshot Dawn) continue their adventure with Nuclear Blast.

The album kicks off with a bang with Chrononautilus, a solid, aggressive track that doesn’t waste a single second trampling all over us. Although screams lead the way, they gladly give way to more melodious clean vocals or epic leads before leading us into Scorched Quadrant, which is immediately softer, revealing more complex patterns in its rhythmics. Once again, the two vocalists naturally answer each other while the groovy, catchy riffs run rampant, leaving Overworld to give more space to leads. The composition remains very accessible, including a few heavy influences, before giving way to Altergeist, a track perfectly combining massive rhythm and airy guitars, while vocalists take turns as usual. The final offers us a moment to breathe before Reichsfall comes in with its catchy riffs from which intense leads sometimes escape, creating more danceable parts, in contrast to Digiphrenia Dawn which develops slightly darker tones thanks to a jerky rhythm. The clean vocal parts soften the mixing, allowing Hyperborean Plains to develop ominous tones before the two voices each add their own touch to the ambience. Gridworm also remains focused on the duality inherent in the band’s music, alternating and combining its driving rhythm with vocal interventions or harmonics, then A Voyage With Tailed Meteors follows, letting guitars bewitch us while keyboards offer more the rhythm majestic parts. The band picks up the pace again on Soulscanner, a highly motivating track that’s sure to unite the crowds, then Xenotaph, the long final track, taps into Progressive Metal to add more surprising tones to its jerky arsenal, whether aggressive or more soaring.

Scar Symmetry‘s return has been eagerly awaited, and with The Singularity (Phase II: Xenotaph) the band proves that their lull is well and truly over, offering well-crafted powerful compositions just waiting to be heard!


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