After finding the unique and talented band Crown I decided to continue my search to see what else France has to offer now a days. Then I came across Embryonic Cells. They list themselves as a mixture of thrash and atmospheric black metal. I'm not sure if I can totally agree with that. Their new album, entitled "The Dread Sentence," displays some interesting melodies and instruments that blend a couple of different genres together. I don't think they're really atmospheric at all though. And their guitar riffs suggest more of a death metal feel.
The album opens with "Fall Is Coming" which is a short minute and a half intro that throws strange and haunting sound effects at you with different keyboards and synths. It definitely displays a very dark image. This leads you right into "I Burn With Life." Killer double bass pedals and melodic chugging guitar riffs rush in completely beating you into the ground. The snares and cymbals are absolutely relentless with booming fills. Constant bass lines rumble beneath you as a wicked scream echoes into the air. After hearing this magnificent scream you would the that the vocals are going to be kick ass. Unfortunately they are not. They sound as if the guy is completely joking and is putting no effort into the lyrics at all. It's a shame because musically the track is excellent. You come across an incredible bridge where the guitars and double bass pedals come together and completely destroy everything in their path. The bass jumps in and out with catchy melodies that'll have you bobbing your head immediately. They even include a monstrous breakdown in the end where everything just comes crushing down on you. excluding the vocals, the track is pretty fucking heavy.
The vocals continue to turn you off in "By Fire." The drums, however, really pick up with more detail and complex rolls that will blow your mind. Meanwhile more blaring guitar riffs chug away sending you right off your feet again. The vocals do change for a brief second as a more demonic growl steps in. It almost sound like Nathan Explosion of Dethklok only not quite as much umph. They include another breakdown that'll definitely destroy some speakers. "I Don't Want To Save This World" still carries most of the bad vocals however some of them in the beginning are not bad. You can definitely tell something has changed in his voice. Eventually he goes back to the bad vocals which continue to put a damper on the album. The track is saved by symphonic keyboards that consume the background of the track and really lift you with its beauty. Also they include some more awesome drum patterns that really break themselves down in the middle of the track where the snares and toms are just going at it with incredible patterns. The instruments definitely make you wanna hit the replay a few times.
The song structure in "Wheel Of Pain" is absolutely phenomenal. It opens with this real dark side to it sending chills down your spine with gloomy keyboards and haunting guitar riffs that chug slowly setting up this eerie depressive tone. The vocals get a step better as they are actually starting to sound like classic black metal screeching. There's definitely a lot of emotion from this masterpiece of a track. And running for over seven minutes long really gives you a satisfying feeling. "Scream Or Die" is another track towards the end of the album that really step things up with both structure and creativity. It also runs for over seven minutes long. The vocals are still boarder line between bad and decent but the guitar riffs and drum rolls keep the track alive. The double bass patterns are incredible. Meanwhile cymbals are constantly crashing in the background giving the track a real violent feel to the mix. The symphonic instruments keep everything in order and lead you through the track perfectly. This is definitely another track that you won't want to miss.
If Embryonic Cells fixed the vocals or even got a new vocalist altogether then the album would easily be a nine out of ten. Unfortunately the vocals really make you step back from this album and may lead you to look at the ban the wrong way. "The Dread Sentence" does have a solid plus side to it though. The album is excellent musically and is well recorded and mixed. Throw in a real black metal vocalist and you've got yourself an album. I would definitely take the time to check it out regardless of its vocal issues. The instruments are just too damn good to miss.
Official Site - http://www.myspace.com/embryoniccells