Hey there, tech fiends. It's that time of the week again. Before we dive into today's focus, here's the usual weekly reminder that if you're looking for even more sick bands to hear, all prior editions of this series can be perused here.
A few months ago at the end of June, Dessiderium, the solo project of guitarist and vocalist Alex Haddad (Arkaik, Nullingroots, Empyrhhic) released a new full-length called Shadow Burn. Ever since it was released, the hype for it kept building and I was inundated with high praise from a lot of people every week and month since it's dropped. I know I'm behind seeing as I just got around to checking out Shadow Burn tonight, but holy fuck is this album every bit as phenomenal as I was told.
For those new to the project, Dessiderium has already released one demo in 2011 and two prior albums in 2013 and 2017 before Shadow Burn was released. I'll clearly need to check out the prior efforts given how great the new album is but it's obvious a lot of the reason this is so good is because it's a project that's grown and evolved over many years. According to the project's Facebook page, the band is "Inspired by JRPGs, film, nostalgia, romance, literature, escapism."
Musically, Shadow Burn blends tech-death on the savage side, with melodic death metal both uplifting and mournful, black metal both symphonic-based and steely cold, along with prog-death underpinnings and near Final Fantasy-esque soundtrack moments that fucking work. It's an expansive and ambitious sound on display from start to finish yet it all flows together organically and fluidly in a way that really doesn't sound like anyone else out there. Which is pretty cool considering the core styles fused together here are finding their way together in more and more groups in the last five to ten years or so and often sounds far too similar in many cases.
Shadow Burn is a very emotional work of art, as Bandcamp states, it's inspired by someone departed who meant the world to Alex. Having lost a sibling to suicide, I can really feel this theme and vibe of immense loss and the pain thereafter. This is such a beautiful release that drips with raw emotion and pain, and you really feel it in a powerful way. I cried a few times while listening to it and smiled plenty at its many incredible moments in every song. Once my first listen of the album today ended I immediately had to put it back on for a second spin.
I’m very impressed with Shadow Burn and while I’m not jaded, I’m hardly as blown away in a big way by bands new to me much after 16 plus years of being a hardcore death metal and tech death nerd. In the off chance you haven't heard this yet, do yourself a favor and give it a few spins to really sink in. You can order Shadow Burn on Bandcamp. You can also follow the group over on the Dessiderium Facebook Page.