We’ve seen some interesting musical transformations in our time. Totorro shifted from slow-burning post-metal to feel-good pop-punk and emo leaning math rock. Stuck In November put away their pedals and electrics and became an acoustic experience. And now we are witnessing another Kafka-esque metamorphosis in Bulgarian trio Mental Architects, who are expanding their musical branches far beyond their instrumental math rock salad days.
So what is different, exactly? You can judge for yourself with this exclusive listen of ‘⠠⠮⠀⠠⠫⠛⠑⠎’ (‘The Edges’) from their newest album ⠠⠠⠞⠗⠥⠑⠎⠊⠣⠞ (Truesight), but let us spell it out for you all the same. (i) Heaviness: the trio’s long-awaited 2017 full-length Ascend already hinted at their revisiting of post-metal territory, which the band straddled in their debut EP Patience, Communication, Understanding, Go!. Here, the band are knee-deep in the darkness, with punishing doom-leaning riffs throughout. (ii) Vocals: no more do the band rely on instrumentation to narrate. Ominous reverberating group vocals pervade Truesight, adding elements of menace and portent. (iii) Blast beats: Melodic black metal motifs make an unexpected but wholly invited appearance in Truesight, lending itself to similarities with Altar Of Plagues and Alcest, rather than ASIWYFA. (iv) Blast beats: Goes without saying.
In all, this is a side of Mental Architects you’ve never heard. It may not be the math rock band we grew up with, but by gum it’s bloody good.