Worlds Beyond The Veil
Review by David on February 13, 2005.
Mithras’ first album Forever Advancing… Legions was a fairly uninspired rehash of death metal in the Morbid Angel-type vein. With their new album certain quarters have hailed them as the second-coming in a somewhat overly dramatic display of hyperbole. There’s no doubt it served its purpose, after all you know of the band now don’t you? But is it really “all that”?
Put succinctly, no.
Worlds Beyond the Veil is an album that wants to be greater than the sum of its parts. It wants to be a meandering epic, a cosmological explosion of giant proportions. Sadly it’s let down by certain elements that seem integral to its style and aspirations.
A six minute, dreary intro doesn’t start things well. It’s functional in as much as scene setting, but taking six minutes to do something that could have been done in two or three is just plain over-indulgence. When confronted with the death metal element things start to fall down even more. Whilst obviously technically adept, the duo kills their music stone dead with a lousy mudslinging guitar sound. Interesting thrash riffs get dragged down into a mire of sludge where all but the most contrasting notes are pretty much indecipherable. Think earlier Morbid Angel playing in a sewer with the lackadaisical “song-structuring” of their Heretic release. Then we have more dreary cosmic sounds to contend with.
In contrast, the ethereal touch lent to the music by the lead guitar sound is perfect at evoking atmosphere. The technical prowess of Leon Macey’s drumming and guitar work should have people crying into their cornflakes that someone is possessed of such a talent. And when the guys put together a coherent (if slime-drenched) song like "Lords and Masters," then the magic really does come to town with the express purpose of glassing you in the face.
This one comes down to another case of a band reaching for the stars but shooting themselves in the foot on more than a few fronts. I suspect, with time, Mithras will release an album as grandiose as their vision, but this one isn’t it.
Categorical Rating Breakdown
Rating: 6.4 out of 10