So here we have Rings of Saturn, a technical/experimental death metal/deathcore band who were conceived in the Summer of 2009. What makes their debut album "Embryonic Anomaly" so special? I'll tell you what.
From the cosmic, yet whimsical opening of "Seized and Devoured" all the way to the eerie closing track "End of Humanity," this album drew me in with its myriad of spacey riffs, juicy death vocals and clean, complex (but still unrelentingly brutal) drumming. And you know what? It kept me right where it lead me to, the whole way through. This album is truly a memorable experience, and I'll explain why.
After quite a few intensive listens, this album really started to grow on me. One reason is that the riffs, being stranger than anything I've ever heard, aren't that of modern technical death metal bands. They are their own thing completely, and are brilliant at that. These riffs will utterly perplex you, leaving you both scratching your head in wonder and wanting more; they grab your attention immediately. And unlike a lot of other releases, these riffs are found all throughout the album, and will continue to hold your attention the whole way through.
Second, the production of this album. "Embryonic Anomaly" features crystal clear production for being independently released. A lot of people would frown upon this, asking themselves if the band could replicate this sound live. However, in this case the crystal clear production is a perfect fit for the album. As for the instruments and how they fit in with each other, every instrument is perfectly audible and in sync with one another, with the exception of the bass, which I had to listen for. Even thought the bass is nearly inaudible, it does get a few chances to shine through on its own, notably 50 seconds into the relentless killing machine that is "Corpses Thrown Across the Sky," which features the most intense breakdown I have ever had the pleasure of hearing.
Ah yes, the breakdowns. There are many throughout the album, from the alien-esque one that wraps up "Invasion," to the one mentioned above, all the way to the spacey, drawn out one featured in "Final Abhorrent Dream." While there are many, I did not find myself annoyed like I do with most generic deathcore bands. If anything, the breakdowns add to the ferocity of this cosmic chunk of experimental death metal.
The lyrics. While being about alien invasion, they're still pretty stock death metal, so don't expect the seriousness you'd get from bands such as Obscura or The Faceless. Even though they contain the stereotypical death and gore of a stock death metal release, it fits perfect with the playful and mischievous atmosphere of this album, so no sweat.
This release is truly excellent in all it's alien glory, and I'm giving it a full 100% for its uniqueness, reasonable length, and for being extremely memorable.