Pillory - Evolutionary Miscarriage - (5/10)
Published on July 2, 2014
Every man has his limits and every subgenre does too, and when it comes to the latest Pillory album, Evolutionary Miscarriage, both of these are pushed well beyond the boundaries of tolerance. Technical death metal, in all its sensational instrumental aptitude, has collapsed under the weight of its own haughtiness and the resulting mangled mess is no more acceptable as a finished product than the individual ingredients that went into it. What all this alludes to is an album that simply has no flow, no recognizable structuring to create an aural foothold; in short, nothing to sustain the listener beyond three tracks, and even before that point the temptation to walk away is still too great to bear.
Luckily, before that happens, the album’s third (title) track reins the interest back in, and for another two or three songs we’re left wondering again if the band will actually jive on a more sociable level rather than masturbate the fret board in an attempt to impress the listener with directionless time signature changes, sweeping techniques, harmonic showmanship, and heavy syncopation that despite being tightly played doesn’t create the richly textured sound the band was aiming for.
Not helping matters, as if the Portal compositional influence wasn’t gratuitously perverted enough, is the production. Quite simply, this album is more processed than Cheez Whiz but doesn’t go down as smoothly, with the drums being the worst offender. The rapid-fire double bass kicks sound too mechanical and clean in their quieted, effeminate thumping, which makes the performance sound too electronic. The vocals, too, are hideously over-processed, the rough edges glossed over to robotic effect, so that no personality remains, even in the most human of elements.
Even when Pillory escapes into real momentum, the NYDM style riffs have a pseudo-breakdown quality that plummets below Internal Bleeding’s lowest moments, feeling exhausted in inspiration and enervated in delivery. Having vision is clearly not enough; one needs a roadmap for guidance, and Pillory has traveled to unnecessarily long and meandering lengths to meet their final objective. Metal, like life, is more about the journey than the destination but here nothing between points A and B is worth visiting. Keep moving, my friends; greener pastures await you.