Extreme Metal is generally the domain of the serious, the strong and the hard issues with no space for any weakness. And absolutely nor to anything that dispalys any sign of joy or pleasure, except the pleasures of the flesh. The music and hardened fetures display a world where joy and happiness don’t exist or, even more, aren’t allowed to exist. It’s not only the lyrics and the aesthetic, but also the music and instrumentals. They have to tough and hard and cold as a stone. However, sometimes a band lets some pleasures of the existent go out of the boundaries and shows a more rhythmically “happy” riffing or everything else. That’s what happens here with Casket and “Urn” which by the tittles of the band and of the album they mean business. All the aesthetic of the band is prepared to be the hardest as possible and the more serious as they can be, however, someone forgot to tell all this to the instrumentals. There is a huge abyss between the gloomy funeral vocals and the more balanced and rhythmically exciting instrumentals. And as you might remember my child of the night I absolutely love this kind of contradiction and contrast. By the way, from where I’m standing Metal Music is all about contradiction and contrast.
Casket do a combination here of very harsh and low-toned vocals with instrumentals with regular standard A tuning. The outcome is something between the realms of Heavy Metal with Death Metal with a sonancy that the regular fan might find it difficult to explain what is happening here. The guitar tones are loud and clear and the riffing is so much near NWOBHM that if the fan listen only the instrumental one might find it’s a Classic Metal band. A great example is “Final Predicament” which shows that a lot with its sharp and bright guitar riffing and an exciting cadence that makes the fan headbang at large. “Urn” is full of moments like this and the unexpected mix is the one that gives the band its very own personality. It kind of breaks all the expectation around the music of the band because one expects the usual dark and gloomy instrumental sometimes hidden under tons of distortion and shady tones. It’s exactly the opposite that happens here with the clear and bright instrumentals. The A tunning helps a lot too. In fact, opening track “Bombing Graves” may confuse the fan at first because the instrumentals still a bit standard. But deep down the key of change is there in the hidden guitar licks and in the exciting cadence. It was the first and main thing that rose my interest to Casket. This song is the best invitation card ever.
What Casket do here in “Urn” is very unusual musically speaking and yet so simple. I guess the fact of breaking all the expectations makes this album so good and worthy listening.
Casket “Urn” will be released on June 4th via Neckbreaker Records.
- Bombing Graves
- The Rope
- To Separate the Flesh from the Bone
- Final Predicament
- Onwards to Destruction (live)
- Kill the Red Lamb (live)
- Faces of the Dead (live)
Watch “Bombing Graves” official video here: