Exocrine celebrates the New Year with its sixth album.
Recently signed to Season of Mist, the band comprising Jordy Besse (bass/vocals, Empyreal Vault, ex-Slicer), Nicolas La Rosa (guitar), Sylvain Octor-Perez (guitar, Empyrean Vault, Sons of Senoka) and Théo Gendron (drums, Dagoba, Master Crow, Widespread Disease), will release Legend in early 2024.
The album opens with Presage, a relatively calm introduction in which a gentle melody slowly carries us into heavy saturation, then on to Legend, a composition that immediately returns to technicality and violence. Worked riffs and beastly howls combine to crush us, while leaving room for a few more original elements, such as the saxophone break or the aerial harmonics, before Life comes along with a catchy rhythm. Leads add the track an accessible touch, constantly trampling over us while placing unexpected accelerations and jerky patterns before letting Ediolon unleash its fury at full speed. The most ethereal and ominous tones of this short track also come from the guitar, which contrasts with the frantic basis as we rush into The Altar Of War and its massive drum parts. Everything in this majestic composition is designed to make our skulls wiggle, while allowing magnificent flowing solos to appear, but a few whispers darken the end of this track, before Dust In The Naught gives it almost danceable tones. These are of course swept away by the furious rhythmics, which nonetheless allow a few groovy passages to remind us of quietness, like the modern final that leads into the wall of sound that is Warlock, the next composition. There’s no need to explain how well speed and raw energy go together for the four musicians, who bury us under their massive crafted sound, then it’s with a brief touch of quietude that Dragon begins, just before hitting us again with impressive explosive riffs. A few more dissonant passages are in store, along with melodious refrains picking up the intro’s lead part, then it’s with the modern The Oath that the band assaults us without giving us time to breathe. The track still offers a soaring break between two assaults, and finally leads into By The Light Of The Pyre, the album’s longest composition, where orchestrations greet us before the rhythmic assault once again, whether with raw violence or more ominous sounds. The more minimalist final leads us into Cryogenisation, a bonus track with cybernetic samples that perfectly fits the cold theme, and spares no expense to close the album with strength.
Exocrine have gone from strength to strength in recent years, and their success is well-deserved. The mastery of instruments is total on Legend, allowing both violence and tranquility to coexist at a frenetic pace.