I am ever so glad that blogs such as No Clean Singing exist. NCS manages to find the right balance between contemporary metal zeitgeist and the underground and presents it all with an editorial angle that suggests real interest and real love for the more extreme side of metal.
In a new series, blog author Austin Weber has started promoting a variety of high quality unsigned/independent/band camp releases. One that caught my ear was Fields of Elysium's Capax Universi.
Imagine if Rings of Saturn were less concerned with speed and "tech-for-tech's-sake" and instead focused on letting eerie harmonies breathe. Even the explicitly "brutal" death metal sections on this album have a lumbering, dangerously swinging feel to them before giving way to jazz jams that slow things down and take the same ideas in different directions. This is jazz and metal done right: it is so nice to see a band moving away from the grind/noise paradigm of blast beat+white noise snare+treble heavy dissonance = metal jazz (it worked for John Zorn... back in 1989, what year is it now?).
At times Capax has a vibe not unlike Mr Bungle. I do not mean gonzo, nut-ball stuff but rather a kind of consciousness about what-is-what in the two genres and how to blend them.
Fields of Elysium are hot stuff and I can only hope they release more and soon.