Norwegian metallers The Fallen Divine present to you their debut album The Binding Cycle, which is definitely a notable entrance.
I guess that the core sound is melodic death metal, but, in reality, this is quite a genre-defining affair which includes elements from various other types of extreme metal (including black metal and metalcore) and even some more traditional metal genres like classic metal and power metal.
The tunes are complex in many ways and contain many lush keyboard arrangements, lots of changes, and technical bursts every now and then, but things never get too quirky for the listener to follow (provided that the listener is into extreme metal, of course). I suspect that Obscura serve as a source of inspiration to the band, as they include some of the baroque-inspired turns that you also hear in Obscura's music. That being said, The Fallen Divine is NOT an Obscura rip-off; The Fallen Divine actually come across as being quite original on this release. There is a lot of focus on guitar melodies, which I quite like, and some of these sometimes come across almost folksy, while others have a more traditional metal feel to them, and others again are more quirky. As an interesting addition - and perhaps reflecting the ongoing dynamic development within metal as the boundaries between extreme metal and traditional metal are blurred - some of the riffage has a very power metal-quality to them, which just further broadens the scope of the album.
Where the music is quite varied (still quite focused), the vocals are pretty one-dimensional in nature, exclusively having the form of a sort of black metal growl-shriek (which sounds really tough on vocalist and keyboardist .... 's throat). Now, some clean vocals would add more texture to the overall soundscape of the album, but I must say that things already work pretty well as they are now.
If you are looking for a progressive alternative to all the melodic death metal that is out there these days, you should definitely give The Binding Circle a listen or two. I suspect it will appeal broadly to fans of such diverse, but ultimately progressively inclined, acts like Opeth, Atheist, Death, Obscura, Protest the Hero, Mastodon, Pestilence and Dimmu Borgir.
2. Shades of Oppression
3. Fire Lights the Night (Self Ignition)
4. Patterns Through Eternity
5. Northern Lights
7. The Tormented One
8. The Binding Cycle