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Tech-Death Tuesday

Tech-Death Tuesday: Enjoy Two More 2016 Gems From MITHRAS And RIFTWALKER

In today's Tech-Death Tuesday. we dissect new 2016 releases from Mithras and Riftwalker.

In today's Tech-Death Tuesday. we dissect new 2016 releases from Mithras and Riftwalker.

Hey there tech-fiends, it's that time of the week again. While today's edition isn't an early stream like it has been lately, I promise there will be one or two more of those before the year ends. But before we dive into today's picks, here's the usual reminder that all prior editions of this series can be perused here. Without further ado, let's get down to jam town pronto.

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Mithras – On Strange Loops

While I'm sure you've noticed I try to focus coverage more on underground acts, there's nothing wrong with giving praise where it's due to something that many of you may already be aware of like the new Mithras. Which in all likelihood, Mithras isn't exactly the most well-known tech-death band anyways in spite of the band consistently releasing killer material for many years since their inception. Given that, I'm quite pleased with the overwhelmingly positive reaction On Strange Loops has justly received from both critics and fans alike. If by some chance you missed out on this album, I implore you to rectify that through checking out the full album stream embedded below.

Mithras have always toyed with tying together death metal's past with a sound akin to Morbid Angel, but upgraded it with an atmospheric heavy and melodically gorgeous take on the sound that speaks more to the modern side of technical death metal. The result is a satisfying blend of old and new conjoined together for an experience unlike anything else out there. Well, save for last year's releases from Sarpanitum and Contrarian, both of which heavily feature performances from Mithras multi-instrumentalist mastermind Leon Macey. In fact, I give both of those releases credit for further spreading awareness of the Mithras gospel to death metal freaks unaware of the band. To sum On Strange Loops up, it is a unique death metal experience well worth investing time and money in. You can order On Strange Loops through the Willowtip Bandcamp page here. Be sure to follow Mithras over on their Facebook page as well.

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Riftwalker – Green & Black

For today's second item, we return to the obscure depths of tech-death with the Vancouver-based act Riftwalker and their new full-length, Green & Black. Given that it's a Canadian tech-death release, that alone should tip you off that Green & Black is a release you need to hear. But if it's not, allow me to list a few more reasons why. First and foremost, Riftwalker lean towards the progressive side of technical death metal, which is always a plus in my book. Although it's plenty aggressive for those of you out there where that's a dealbreaker.

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From the eloquent riffing, to the superb songwriting, to the gorgeous and audible bass playing, Green & Black feels more like a progressive death metal release in a tech-death shell and the way they deliver such an experience is quite impressive. Likewise, it often carries an old school thrashy spirit in the riffs that is a welcome change from much of what I hear. Riftwalker seem to draw from such a wide swath of both old school prog./tech death and newer sounds that they are one of those rare bands who are quite difficult to place accurate comparisons to. Personally, the harder it is for me to assemble sonic comparisons, the better the music usually is. But if you really need a point of reference, it reminds me of older Neuraxis and Augury supplemented by the thrashy vibe  mentioned above. I won't be smug and admit this is one I had on my radar, it was one of many that came to my attention after the fact. But after spinning Green & Black several times, Riftwalker have my undivided attention from here on out. You can order Green & Black through the Riftwalker Bandcamp page here. Be sure to follow Riftwalker over on their Facebook page as well.

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