Soulrest — Angst, Ghouls and Superstitions (2021)
Author: Шпинат

The veterans of death metal from Uzhhorod didn't just present their new album but had set a goal to make it one-track-length. Was this experiment successful or not – our author Spinach explores. 

Single-track albums and EPs no longer surprise in the world of heavy music. People have been creating singles that go beyond the standard of 3-5-minutes length and become full-length or mini-albums for decades now. We can mention the cult album "Dopesmoker" by Sleep, and many stoner and doom releases that followed their path, also Meshuggah – "I", the diptych of Swedish metallers Edge Of Sanity – "Crimson" and "Crimson II", experimental EP "Natasha" by Pig Destroyer, etc. However, I don't remember any good single-track albums of Ukrainian artists, so it was very interesting what would come out of it, because these musicians have all the tools and experienced enough to deliver.

 

Soulrest is an Uzhhorod-based metal band that plays old school death metal with an inclination towards prog / tech death. The band released its first demo in the mid-90s, then there were two full-lengths in 2005 and 2006, a six-year break and their third album "Beyond The Borders Of Sense" in 2012, their last full-length album "In Spite" came out in 2017, on which Soulrest experimented and combined the same prog death with thrash metal, death'n'roll and even psychedelic rock. Soulrest enjoyed experimenting, so they wanted to explore new things again this time::

"We decided to experiment with the format and expression of ideas, focusing more on immersing ourselves in the mood of the music and on longer melodies’ variations, as opposed to the standard songs that hit the point straight away. "Angst, Ghouls and Superstitions" apparently differs from the previous album, there is less aggression, less sharp movements and changes; at the same time, the material is more saturated and multifaceted, there are elements of death metal, dark metal, black metal," – Soulrest musicians say.

The album begins with a half-whisper, followed by a roar of familiar death metal, but in less than a minute the whispers and guitar solos return, after which the atmospheric keyboard parts performed by Dmytro Loshak are masterfully added to this mix to increase the eeriness that guitars and drums created. In general, during the first half of the composition, these were the guitar solos and keys that impressed me the most, but I also really enjoyed the small drum solo just at the equator of the track. Soulrest put out lots of melody into the song, so a half an hour track is still an interesting listen. It is like the band gives listeners a chance to relax and breathe between heavy pieces, note the transition from a beautiful guitar to the straight-out black metal in the spirit of Mayhem around the twentieth minute of the song. Soulrest made the track complete, interesting to listen to, with the enough variety of elements but without turning it into a cluster of ideas.

 

However, in my opinion, the ending of "Angst, Ghouls and Superstitions" seems a little blurry. The attacking death / thrash in the last four minutes is followed by a cool slow doom metal riff, which we already heard in the middle of the song and which ends up the track quite epically, but then the acoustic guitar returns, the transition to which does not seem very logical, it feels like an "outro" that was just slapped on top of the song with no specific purpose.

In general, I was pleasantly surprised by the sound, composition and even the use of dark metal keys. According to the musicians, the aim of this EP was to use music and lyrics to convey a look at their own fears, fantasies, hidden desires, not realized due to social pressure. It is a call on not to be afraid of your inner demons, to talk to them, and thus to be able to silent them if necessary. And I think, the soundtrack for talking to the demons turned out to be fairly good. Of course, the task of writing a 30-minute track is not an easy one and there are completely different expectations for such composition, so "Angst, Ghouls and Superstitions" is a bold experiment, the result of which can be considered satisfactory.

The opinions expressed in the reviews convey the views of the authors themselves and do not necessarily reflect the position of Neformat.com.ua

 

Soulrest — is the band from Uzhhorod that was formed in the mid-90s and still exists, though the membership of it changed multiple times. Their musical style is progressive death metal. Soulrest roots from the no longer active Pentagram and Deathorder bands. Their first ever demo was written in 1996 and was recorded the same year together with two more tracks. Five more compositions were written a year later and in April of 1997 their first and self-released album "Pathological Processes" saw the world. Soulrest toured the whole Transcarpathian region and Slovakia with that one. After it, the band released a few more albums, live and split with the band Obrij:

Ivan "Yasya" Peresh — guitar/bass
Dmytro Loshak — keyboards
Viktor "Non" — vocal

Soulrest on social media:

https://soulrest.bandcamp.com/
https://www.facebook.com/Soulrestofficial/
https://www.youtube.com/channel/UChNecd1qEGuqGL1J-xIsBSQ

Neformat.com.ua ©

1. Angst, Ghouls and Superstitions

04.04.2021