Written by: EL on 02/09/2014 13:54:51

Hailing from Belgium, Oathbreaker are slowly setting a mark across Europe’s metal scene. The group's second album “Eros|Anteros” seamlessly brings together the gruelling sounds of sludge-metal and hardcore-punk and releases a refreshing sea of terror on unsuspecting ears and Vocalist Caro Tanghe proves she is more than meets the eye by putting many a man to shame with her exceptional vocals.

Opening track “Beeltenis”, which is Dutch for “Portrait”, paints a picture of sheer despair and fear in an empty darkness. The guitars weep in sync with each other and both release a torrent of sadness. It sets a tone for the rest of the album. “No Rest for the Weary” suddenly crashes through at neck snapping speed opening us up to a wave of chaos. Back to back tracks “As I Look Into The Abyss” and “As The Abyss Looks Into Me” show the divide of sound and feel of the album, which is also mirrored in the album's name “Eros|Anteros”, the names of the god of love and the avenger of unrequited love. “As I Look Into The Abyss” is harrowing and presents us with apocalyptic screams whereas “The Abyss That Looks Into Me” twists the mood with mournful melodies and rises up into a crashing climax and in my opinion is the strongest track on the album.

The swift change from soft and sorrowful vocals to throat ripping mania is again seen in “Agartha”. Starting off aggressively and quickly it suddenly shifts gear and drops into a more sombre flow. The eerie overtones cut through you with precision and ease, evoking a sort of sadness inside of you. The constant to and fro of emotions in this album are quite remarkable and leave you never quite knowing what might come next.

What is Oathbreaker? I find myself constantly asking this question. They are too vicious and malevolent to be classed as just a hardcore band but then their constant and abrupt changes between experimental riffs and demonically soulful soft vocals push them further apart from being a metal band. Perhaps they lean closest to the post-metal branch. Either way, whatever it is they have produced has led them to create an intoxicatingly hypnotic listen.

Their final song, “Clair Obscur”, is eleven minutes worth of head lolling sound. It parries through a range of sound and textures, reaching from the deepest soul searching depths to the highest of soulless musings. Using solely soft vocals in this final piece, this song revisits the cross and divides of this album. The ominous sounds of Caro’s voice run deep down your spine and leave you feeling unsettled and bewitched.

Oathbreaker are slowly setting themselves apart from many post-metal bands and are on the road to greater things if this album and their live performances is anything to go by.


Download: The Abyss Looks Into Me, Agartha, Clair Obscur
For The Fans Of: Deafheaven, Isis, KEN Mode
Listen: facebook.com/theoathbreakerreigns

Release date 20.08.2014
Deathwish Inc.

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