“The only answer to the question
About the meaning of life
Our only goal in this vast universe
Is to use our time to the fullest
We’re alive but time’s running short
We will all die and so we must: Exist!”
Typically, we only expect an artist to develop a sophisticated composition and present a hopefully unique musical idea in the context of a span of songs without flogging us to death with mediocrity or outright boredom. THESYRE not only manage to pull off this feat, but have aptly answered the question concerning the meaning of life. Yes, Deep Thought was wrong all along as it is not 42 (yeah, I’m not a Douglas Adams fan either and I want my money back from that god-awful movie).
This 30 minute epic of sorts is quite ambitious not only in lyrical content nor length, but primarily in the select blend of the extreme Metal palate, throwing every goddamn style into a blender and producing a rather odd and unique feel strung together by malevolent coated yet subtly energetic lyrical quip. The crux of the album lies in the slick Industrial-tinged riffing which often rides a rather deliberate rhythm, having no problem at all getting the head-banging and the heart racing. Atmosphere is certainly present, the kind which hearkens to a post-apocalyptic wasteland, but takes a back seat to the Black ‘n Roll sound which is a deliberate extension of a large portion of the current Black Metal scene.
The most poignant aspect displayed by this threesome is readily the texture applied to the songwriting and the ability to craft a deeply moving composition while combining a multitude of obscure entities which come together to form a whole greater than the sum of its parts. This is nothing revolutionary or even absolutely mandatory, but the way “Exist!” can move from a harsh Thrashy Black Metal riff to an acoustic-turned-static interlude then all the way back to a Punkish Heavy Metal guitar work-out while managing to sound complete and thorough is quite astounding. Nothing is half-assed and everything reeks of effort as a great deal of care went into the song-writing process, ultimately for the better.
Right around the 18 minute mark when the ride begins to pick up again we are fully able to realize the identity of the band. The almost tribal yet catchy drumming in combination with a distorted Punk riff is definitely reminiscent of others work, yet completely remote and unparalleled at the same time. Syre’s prominent and often highlighted bass lines add a great deal to the song and help to formulate that identity. You also can’t help but eat up Zvord’s hypnotic drumming which manages to keep the momentum at its height and can tackle the plethora of tempo changes quite readily.
“Exist!” is a prominent work due to the completely unique nature of the listen which is actually rather light while maintaining a hidden depth. This is not an album which requires a huge amount of attention or a high level of investment from the listener, yet it certainly offers much more than merely background music. While this isn’t the best Metal I’ve heard this year, I would recommend this due to the excellent song writing, stellar production, and of course…the answer to the ultimate question.
(Online January 4, 2007)