Metal Hammer (UK) - - Albums - MATT MILLS


FEAR­LESS Ex­per­i­men­tal met­al­core out­fit fail to find their bear­ings Ar­riv­ing two and a half years af­ter Oceans Ate Alaska’s well­re­ceived de­but, Hikari is very much busi­ness as usual for the Birm­ing­ham-based quin­tet. Like its pre­de­ces­sor, it bridges met­al­core sen­ti­ments with avant-garde and un­pre­dictable com­po­si­tions, meld­ing Is­sues vo­cals and Meshug­gah rhythms into a fre­netic 35-minute pack­age. As a tech­ni­cal mas­ter­class, it’s un­stop­pable, stun­ning the unini­ti­ated early on as Ben­zaiten builds to the record’s first mind­bend­ing, polyrhyth­mic move­ment. The al­bum is an au­ral at­tack but as you be­come ac­cus­tomed to its tech­ni­cal­ity and post-mod­ern song struc­tures, you’ll find a de­creas­ing amount of plea­sure to re­turn to. In its ef­forts to be ex­per­i­men­tal, Hikari aban­dons such met­al­core no­tions as hooks, an­themic sin­ga­longs or grooves, mak­ing playthroughs feel like math­e­mat­i­cal demon­stra­tions rather than soul­ful jour­neys.

FOR FANS OF: Sikth, The Con­tor­tion­ist, Is­sues

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