Connect with us

Hi, what are you looking for?

With the changes not only in the band, but also in the sub-genre, which has undoubtedly turned into the new deathcore, it will be fascinating to see how this album is received.


Album Review: VALE OF PNATH II

No review found! Insert a valid review ID.

In 2011, Vale of Pnath released a solid album called The Prodigal Empire. I was very intrigued, and this Denver based technical death metal band seemed to be well on their way to staking a claim and becoming a prominent feature not only in the local scene, but also to fans from around the globe.

Advertisement. Scroll to continue reading.

With Willowtip as their label, and over five years since their previous release, Vale of Pnath has re-branded their name, acquired some new members, and are now releasing II on June 10th this year. With the changes not only in the band, but also in the sub-genre, which has undoubtedly turned into the new deathcore, it will be fascinating to see how this album is received.

To be clear, I really enjoy some good quality deathcore. This goes the same for any sub genre: I get excited for just about anything as long as it's "good". In the past few years, we have seen a shift in the metal world in regards to deathcore. Remember when it was all the rage, and fans started to put away their metalcore music for heavy dubstep, then exchanged it for deathcore (according to the scene where I grew up)? It seems another shift has occurred and focus has been generated on technical death. There are thousands of bands playing fast, hard, and technical. The majority I can pass on, but as the saturation continues, I find my once fevered passion of the subgenre is dampened by the difficulty of finding what originally brought me to the music. To bring this back to Vale of Pnath and their newest album II, it is, in its entirety, not bad. Compared to others in the vast cauldron of tech-death, it's actually decent. To be clear though, it's not what I am looking for.

Some of the strengths are the amazing riffs. Can't have good metal without established and talented guitar writers, and this is what Vale of Pnath has placed their name on. Since acquiring Eloy Montes (ex-Flub) his contributions have definitely been an influence. This is an excellent addition, and I can see the band getting more focused on this Flub/Between The Buried and Me sound and guitar writing, and the band making a third successful album, if that's their chosen direction.

Each song maintains a strong identity, and even after a few listens, it's clear that recognizable tracks cycling through will be easy to spot and celebrate. This is owed to the guitar segments, whether it be the prominent bass portions that are a staple in the band, or the ascending, epic-sounding power riffs that shower each song in its self awareness and confidence.

Advertisement. Scroll to continue reading.

A few good hooks on each song does not make an album stand out to me though. Unfortunately, what was mentioned above are the only strengths on this album. When it's really analyzed, what II appears to be is a slowed down, less technical version of Abiotic.

I probably won't be listening to II again for a while, not until I hear rumors of their next release. I believe Vale of Pnath could do great things with another album, but it will be up to the band to choose a direction and drill deep into their identity to find their place. What originally brought me to the music is hard to say. What is clear is that good music is hard to find, which is good in the long run. The more options available, the more critical we can be, and the more competition there is to give individuals and fans that passion again to what brought them here in the first place.

Score: 6.5/10

Show Comments / Reactions

You May Also Like


Featuring Malignancy, Vale Of Pnath, Anata, and more!

Latest News

Abigail Williams, Ghost Bath, and Stormruler will be there too.

Tour Dates

Your winter just got a healthy infusion of live death metal: Obscura, Abysmal Dawn, Vale of Pnath and Interloper have announced an extensive North...