Aliases: Derangeable – album review
Aliases: Derangeable (Basick Records)
LP | CD | DL
Aliases’ latest record entitled Derangeable is a perfect blend of frenetic tech-metal riffing, killer groove and soaring melodies. Anyone well aware of guitarist Pin and his work with Sikth will know this record is bound to be bursting with insane finger shredding guitar work, bizarre time signatures and a mix of musical styles constantly battling for attention.
Louder Than War’s Adam Jones reviews.
It’s difficult to know where to begin with this album as musically it’s pulling in multiple directions. Despite this the record still feels cohesive and doesn’t tend to lose the listener at any point even whilst switching between genres. Kicking things off is opening track Find Where You Hide which wastes no time in diving head first into a barrage of mesmerising fretwork and frantic vocals, quickly shifting between chaotic screams and soaring melodies. As mentioned the guitar work on this record is expectedly amazing with Leah Woodward and Pin’s guitar lines seamlessly intertwining as they trade equally brain melting leads. The technical procession in which the riffs are played is surgically precise with every single note played with clarity and purpose. Despite all of this instrumental wizardry it never comes off as forced and ultimately always seems to benefit the song. This as the opening song really typifies just the sheer insanity that appears on parts of Derangeable, featuring such oddities as a saxophone solo for instance.
All of these eccentricities are what makes this record stand-out and even with these seemingly random moments it all fits underneath the Aliases banner. None of these eclectic influences ever compromise the band’s sound and are so well placed that none of the songs ever sound wacky or silly. Second track Everything Is Upon Us for example incorporates an electronic almost dub-step influence with glitch style staccato synths perfectly blending into the angular riffs. The low end wobble of the bass underneath the song really adds a new dynamic along with a different kind of heaviness to the tracks outro. These intricate additional parts help to break up the more straightforward tech-metal parts that you’d expect. You have moments like the subtle orchestral backing on the albums closing track Above The Sky which grab your attention and keep you interested in just where the records going to go next.
Its clear most people checking out this album will most notably be fans of Pin’s other band Sikth but there is certainly a more accessible sound here. That’s not to say that Derangeable is more dumbed down, its anything but, however there are a lot more instantly catchy melodies here for people to latch onto. The vocals on this record are just one of the things that will make this album more accessible with those outside the technical metal audience. Songs like Face For Lust contain big anthemic choruses that you can imagine crowds passionately singing along to. This song, along with many others, also has a monstrous groove to it with the chorus in particular featuring an nu-metal sized bounce. Aliases really manage to successfully find the balance between the technical metal style lunacy the hard-core fans appreciate and the big riffs and choruses that will surely gain them acclaim amongst other audiences.
Ultimately Derangeable will satisfy fans wanting expert musicianship and technically challenging music along with those who want massive melodies and groove laden riffing. The band have successfully built upon their initial sound adding in elements from other genres and musical styles giving this album a new dynamic. This record will surely make Aliases a stand-out in the technical metal scene as one of the genres shining lights.
If you want to find more on Aliases you can do so here.
All words by Adam Jones. More of Adam’s writing can be found at his authors archive.