I’m not the one to tell about the Metal scene in Poland, I thought it was all about ravenous Death Metal and amusing “sitting with my guitar and composing at home” demo music. Along comes ATROPHIA RED SUN, a Polish abstract made from original, extreme, trippy and compressed song writing defying and spitting at everything formulaic and stale.
I’ve never heard a band that tries to break so many musical barriers at once like A.R.S. does, they’re doing something completely different with the concept Death/Black Metal, a freak mutation of Extreme Metal, industrial bizarreness, electronical beeps and itching recalling your last visit to the dentist when his drilling was set to “trigger happy”. All that you associated with common Black Metal and Death Metal from technical shelves is there, accompanied by the features mentioned above of course.
You see bands coming out with ambitious albums at an early career stage, A.R.S. are only one album into their dark discography and even if this was to be their last they’d still go down in style. You’ll have to excuse me but it’s downright rude to start with standards this high on your first album, their mastery is not wishful thinking, they know their craft and have done well to hone their creative methods of writing songs that go beyond the boundaries. The cementation is completed with behaved Prog Metal (and sparks of Math Metal) instrumentalism and vocal experimentation on acid.
The atmosphere is futuristic, mechanical but the album doesn’t stay in this cold state too long, thankfully they understood that a song needs contrast in most cases, which is why you’ll get plenty of melodic symphonic passages that lead my thoughts to DIMMU BORGIR´s “P.E.M.” album. Songs are long and technical, and will take some time to seep into your system which makes this record all the more exciting to study.
“Twisted Logic” will sound bad and all scattered at first but once you get to know the songs and the album’s real identity you’ll find its original neatness and structural challenges, I’ve found some well hidden details in the music yet I was unaware of the “Twin Peaks” (is that thing still on btw?) theme being used in the first song and the weird droid sounds on the title track, I’m still finding stuff.
Twisted into form, this Phantasmal Death Metal album (the first of its kind I presume) comes highly recommended to everyone but the conservative Metal fan. I won’t take the risk of giving a rating that’s close to perfect, who knows how far they can go with a toxic approach like this. (Online November 13, 2004)