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Augury: Fragmentary Evidence

It took them 5 years, but Canada's Augury are back with a damn impressive follow-up to their debut Concealed in the form of Fragmentary Evidence, a boiling, churning, brutally heavy concoction of progressive & technical death metal with a healthy dollop of jazz-fusion thrown in for good measure. That's right, Augury are out to tap into the fanbase of acts such as Death, Cynic, Braindrill, Into Eternity, Gorguts, Pestilence, Nile, and Obscura, and if you dig those bands chances are you are going to go bonzo after hearing this brand new release for Nuclear Blast Records.

From the opening notes of the rippling "Aetheral", you are instantly aware that this is going to be one brutal, crazy ride. Crazy, complex torrents of guitar and bass lines flying over intense rhythms while an array of extreme vocal styles hit you in the face like a wave of broken glass. "Simian Cattle" combines technical death metal with flashes of folk metal, and the wild "Orphans of Living" sees the band take short breaks of pure jazz-fusion between all the death metal bombast. Honestly, the jazz passages are so well put together, as weaving guitar and bass lines just intoxicate your senses before the raging thunder comes crashing back into the mix. Liquid bass lines and layers of guitar chords lead in "Jupiter To Ignite", as this number starts off quite jazzy before brutal growls and razor sharp & complex riffs come into play, but just as quickly the fusion element returns briefly, only to give way once again to more brutality. Lots of guitar and bass solos on this one in addition to all the crazy interplay, making it a real treat for prog-metal fans. On "Sovereigns Unknown" the band again returns to some of those folk metal vocal stylings, and vary their musical and vocal attack on the relentless "Skyless", a piece that has some truly mindblowing interplay between the guitars and bass. While some of the arrangments on "Faith Puppeteers" might remind of Iron Maiden, it's pure death metal for the most part, and "Brimstone Landscapes" mixes jazz, prog, death metal, power metal, grind, and folk metal all into one fascinating sound. Fragmentary Evidence concludes with the 11-minute progressive metal opus "Oversee The Rebirth", another proggy/jazzy piece that sees ragged growls doing battle with acrobatic bass lines, churning riffs, and blazing drum blasts. The middle instrumental section sounds like it could have come off of one of King Crimson's early 80's albums...breathtaking stuff.

Overall, there is some seriously incredible music here. Probably a bit too extreme for the prog crowd, and that's a real shame as there is some amazing playing going throughout this CD that would certainly be enjoyed by lovers of that genre. Technical death metal fans however are going to absolutely eat this up...and since I'm one of them, time to hit the replay button!

Track Listing
01. Aetheral
02. Simian Cattle
03. Orphans Of Living
04. Jupiter To Ignite
05. Sovereigns Unknown
06. Skyless
07. Faith Puppeteers
08. Brimstone Landscapes
09. Oversee The Rebirth

Added: July 20th 2015
Reviewer: Pete Pardo
Related Link: Band Website
Hits: 2989
Language: english

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Augury: Fragmentary Evidence
Posted by Jon Neudorf, SoT Staff Writer on 2015-07-20 02:14:49
My Score:

Quebec probably has the most varied and progressive music scene in Canada. Here is the technical/progressive death metal band Augury and their second album Fragmentary Evidence, originally released on Nuclear Blast Records now picked up by Metal Mind Productions and released as a limited golden disc edition.

In the band are Patrick Loisel (vocals, electric guitar, 12-string acoustic guitar), Mathieu Marcotte (electric guitar, 12-string acoustic guitar), Dominic Lapointe (4-string fretless bass, 6-string bass) and Antoine Baril (drums).

While the music is incredibly heavy the band include many mellower and melodic bits and pieces, often jazzy and always pleasing to the ears making the brutal intensity a little easier to swallow. This is one talented band and your head will be put on a swivel trying to take it all in. The songs are inundated with death metal riffs played with gusto and precision and the growling vocals of Loisel are as intense as they come. Shred-like guitar solos also abound but when called upon the band is able to lighten the load and include some tantalizing melodic parts like the arpeggio guitar intro in "Brimstone Landscapes" and the delicate moments in "Jupiter to Ignite", a song traveling between ultra-heavy soundscapes of intense metal riffage and lovely progressive bits of melodic complexity.

I am normally ambivalent to such extreme forms of metal but I have to admit the talent in this band is something special and is especially impressive when they throw in those contrasting lighter moments that serve to heighten the progressive factor that much more. From what I understand the band is still around so let's hope a new album is in the works. In the meantime, Fragmentary Evidence is certainly a rewarding and exciting listen.

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