Yyrkoon – Occult Medicine

up_020705_yyrkoonFrance’s Yyrkoon really offer a bit chomping dose of death metal by combining both the old and new school’s of brutality… not to mention unbridled technical flair. The speed of the new school is here in spades, but Yyrkoon rarely dip into nonsensical turbo blast fills and this allows a much-needed injection of melody to drip in and benefit the catchiness and motion of each track. A lot of old school crunch chords fill in the bottom end for dueling harmonies to destroy the senses with well played hooks that will linger on the brain. Even though Yyrkoon maintain a pleasing Euro death affinity by way of punishing mid tempo breaks and the aforementioned use of melody, there is a definite US brutal death sense of aggression and the occasional groove element that gives their overall presentation a touch of interesting movement. Thankfully the guttural vocal delivery of guitarist Steph doesn’t tip the scales into the US death cupped mic barking ala Chris Barnes, for his lower to more colorful mid ranged scream highlights the well sculpted music nicely and his higher range also allows a bit of a German thrash of old influence to enter “Occult Medicine.” Well structured, produced and focused, “Occult Medicine” strikes me as one of the best modern death metal albums that I have heard (not to mention, actually listen to again), in a long time. Yyrkoon succeed because they poured a lot of class, interesting depth and love for the old staples of a death metal scene into this album. That element alone seems largely forgotten in light of all the faceless turbo speed freaks out there clotting the wound gashed wide open by time and the technological advances (both in regards to human and machine) that come with any musical styles evolution. “Occult Medicine” was a nice surprise indeed. – Marty

~ by martyworm on January 3, 2009.

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