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Review: Astral Tomb - Soulgazer (2022)



Astral Tomb is a death metal trios that formed in 2019 at Denver, Colorado, the band started their career by releasing a demo called Subterranean Forms in 2019, then the following year involved a split album called Chasm Of Aeons with bands like Cryptic Shift, Replicant, and Inoculation which caught my attention, and then in 2021 they made their debut EP entitled Degradation of Human Consciousness which received a lot of appreciation from death metal lovers. Well, to follow up on what they have achieved, they are return by releasing their debut album ia called Soulgazer through Blood Harvest Records on March 25th, 2022.

Transcendental Visions opened this album in a very messy way, they delivered a vicious mix of death metal, doom metal, and dirty technical death metal that executed with complex, chaotic, and filthy guitar riffs, nasty vocals, heavy bass, and thunderous drums. The musical structure is really varied, sometimes intricate, rough, and sometimes scary. It is the longest track on the album spewing out compositions that are extremely difficult to digest and allow the band to create an abrasive sonority, then followed by Be Here Now..., a weird and quirky sampling like the soundtrack to welcoming the aliens to earth, they invade us with cosmic tones that are hard to explain and digest, before Inertia (Crashing Through The Doorways Of Eternity Comes Along) to attack us with a heavy and messy musical composition, featuring a series of chaotic yet sinister guitar riffs, powerful vocals, great bass, and torturous drumming. This song captures the strong old school death metal sentiment and is then fused together with the intricate technical death metal, the musical structure is so unique and confusing that it evokes an unreasonable atmosphere, before a quiet outro accompanies us with a tranquil and friendly instruments giving us a moment to take a deep breath. Traversing The Wandering Star, has an anxiety that come through a cosmic ambient where pushing an introduction that turns into chaos as the music moves in a heavy direction, featuring discordant, messy, and complicated notes with an old-school quality that once again keeps you alert, then the album closes with Ascending A Pillar Of Light, a song that's very complicated to digest, they spit out brief dissonant parts, complex guitar parts, and then anchor to a serene part before exploding again with a very aggressive structure along with a blazing melodic backdrop. And the song slowly moves towards the end with chaos that continues to smolder and leaves an amazing listening experience.

Soulgazer provides an extraordinary listening experience, where the listeners are invited to travel towards a weird cosmic dimension through a very abrasive and complex death metal offering that fused with varied elements, such as tech-death, doom metal, and old school twists. All of those compositions are executed along with intricate, chaotic and messy guitar riffs, nasty vocals, excellent bass performances, and blaring drums, as well as some weird ambient parts. The songwriting is unique with outstanding production. It's a solid album that dedicated to death metal devotees all over the world.