Review by Adam on March 19, 2005.
Extol equal brilliance. Ever since I heard Cynic’s Focus, I have been waiting for a band to come out with the melody and the technicality to match. While Extol are not quite in the same genre of metal as Cynic, they do exhibit many of their qualities. Combine fusion, thrash, death, metalcore, and acoustic splendor and you get just a peak into the progressive ingenuity this band possesses.
As soon as this record started, my jaw immediately hit the floor. If you are a fan of technical music, then you will absolutely adore Extol. They craft seamless and beautiful metal songs that are complex, yet surprisingly easy to digest. The musicianship borders perfection as does the album’s production.
The vocals on Synergy make it happen. Sitting beside vocalist Peter Espevoll’s unearthly screams are guitarist Ole Borud’s captivating clean vocals. The quality of these melodic vocals is immeasurable. When I listen to them, I feel empowered and moved, especially on the acoustic track “Aperture.” This coupled with the richness and variety of the music and we maybe already talking album of the year contender.
Synergy will take you more places than you would have ever dreamed possible. Extol take Opeth’s beauty, Death’s progressiveness, Meshuggah’s crazy time signature changes, and Cynic’s fusion inspired technicality to create a sound all their own. This is the first album to come out in a long time to impress me so much upon the first listen. If you enjoy any of the bands that I have mentioned in this review, then Synergy is a must for your collection. It may take a while for you absorb it all, but once you have, be prepared to keep it in your cd player for a long time!
Categorical Rating Breakdown
Rating: 9 out of 10