Chapel of Disease Sees the Storm and Embraces the Eye
We sometimes forget metal's roots -- death metal has grown into such an extreme brutality (an offshoot of thrash metal, itself) that it is impossible to even discern the rock which gave birth to it. Everything is linear, there is no punctuated equilibrium or sudden evolutionary change in music. Art grows upon itself and manifests in a logical procession, which explains a thousands-of-years path from early music all the way to the postmodernity of hyper-brutal death metal.
However, what if this lineage was discernible? What if we could hear metal's early roots buried within a death metal record (outside the occasional blues solo)? It honestly seemed more like a novelty or pipe dream than anything else, and yet Germany's Chapel of Disease demonstrates this simultaneity with fluidity and perfectionism. Listen to an exclusive full stream of their new album ...And As We Have Seen The Storm, We Have Embraced The Eye below.
First and foremost, this is a death metal record. At least, it is in spirit, but it is also a rock record, and also a heavy metal records. There is a playfulness to ...And As We Have Seen The Storm, We Have Embraced The Eye which belies its intensity -- a bluesy facade for a greater and more ferocious being. The six tracks which comprise the album's 47 minutes straddle this dualism in a way which is, dare I say, fun. Something which truly rocks, and in a different way than one might associate with Corpsegrinder-style windmilling.
This is an album of heroics: guitar heroism, songwriting heroism, and energetic heroism. It is over the top and self-indulgent, a classicism which could be ascribed to both classic rock and death metal. Each member does more than their share to make the music memorable, strutting in what could only be imagined as leather-clad metal champions, lording themselves over their musical kingdom.
...And As We Have Seen The Storm, We Have Embraced The Eye is out November 23rd on Ván Records. Read a track-by-track walkthrough from the band below.
"Void Of Words"
I remember this being the first song that was consciously written for the album. I didn‘t write anything after The Mysterious Ways of Repetitive Art for quite some time and this was more or less the breakthrough for me personally considering the guitarwork again.
We had the idea of connecting the first two songs of the album for quite some time (that is, before any songs were even written) and from that idea on, it was really sort of a puzzle that needed to be put together. What we then had was the first part of the song, meaning everything up around the first three minutes of it, and Ced had that strummed clean part lying around for a longer period of time. I remember us jamming to that part at his place where I would improvise that solo and a lot of that first improvisation actually stayed. So what we needed was another, laid back, slower clean part in between to glue everything together. After we had that, everything became one and it all seemed to make sense. It was an interesting and especially demanding way of writing, which was exactly what we needed to raise the bar for us personally.
Generally, this is one of my favourite songs we have written so far and it really sums up the album in a perfect way. It's a nice balance of catchyness and proggyness, without it seeming unnatural. It's almost as if we put our cards on the table right away for the listener to know what to expect from the album.
"Oblivious -- Obnoxious -- Defiant"
Doing this track by track walkthrough actually reminded me of the fact that the second song connecting to "Void Of Words" was a completely different one for many months. I absolutely forgot about the fact that there was a song that we completely ditched from the tracklist again (just one riff of it would later be used in "The Sound Of Shallow Grey" again). It just didn‘t work out and didn‘t feel right to us. When we finally had "Oblivious -- Obnoxious -- Defiant," we knew we had it right. This song has a lot of energy. It‘s also my personal favourite one considering the interaction between the music and the lyrics, which work great together. Both, music and words, follow along each other and really seem to tell an actual story with an introduction, a climax, and an ending. I really do love this number. It catches so many different atmospheres and has a very coherent structure to it, although being so multifaceted.
"Song Of The Gods"
Probably the easiest song to write for us so far. It was just a very, very natural thing. I had the riffs set and we would have the song done in a couple of hours. Of course, you always work on parts later on, but this was just very fluently done. And I would say that this makes sense with it being our most hook-based number so far. It obviously has this classic rock vibe to it, which then sort of breaks with the verses and which does break with the lyrical theme for sure, which is quite nebulous. I remember showing it to a friend as a demo recording and he summed it up quite well with it having two very different voices that somehow work out together as one.
Quite a dark one with a very heavy touch it. It's the last song we wrote for this record and it did take some time. I really enjoy Ced's lyrics here with their search for everything and nothing, which is a general feeling to the album. What's the role of the individual in a so supersaturated place, is there any role at all with life and death being such an obvious and vague concept at the same time? Its a search without any concrete goal and I think the song translates all these ideas very well. It's a big, playful middle section in that track that literally seeks its way back to where one started after all…
"1.000 Different Paths"
When I wrote that "Void Of Words" was the first song that was consciously written for this album, I had in mind that the riffs for "1.000 Different Paths" were there quite some time before but I didn‘t know for what to use them… It turned out to be a Chapel of Disease song.
We wanted to have a guest vocalist for this one for quite some time and I have to say that the fact that I had my go with clean vocals has a lot to do with Sven from Ván Records, since he kept on telling me I should simply try it out… I will never be a good singer, but the vocals simply function well here. Very proud of this one and quite a personal number for me and Ced.
"The Sound Of Shallow Grey"
We did not want to write another number that would slowly build up and have this big epic feeling to it this time as a closure of the album. You get that on most metal records by now, and we have done it on The Mysterious Ways of Repetitive Art already.
The outcome was a song that would go straight in and would have this impulsive feeling to it, taking the listener right in. I like the fact that there are so many faces to this song. You get a lot of classic rock, some 1980s synth stuff but also some very heavy riffing here. While "Void Of Words" introduces the album in a fitting manner, this song definitely closes it and leaves nothing more to say.
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