Monday, February 06, 2006

Engineer - Reproach CD Review

Epic doom metal is something of an acquired taste for most, but once someone has finally identified the magical ingredient that makes the genre so much more than a conglomeration of slow, droning noise, there is no going back. However, for some it might be hard to get to that point or, for others, the genre won’t be appealing at all. For those people, what if there were a band that could bridge the gap between modern metal and the ├╝ber-epicness of the Cults of Luna and Neurosis’s that are out there?

Such a band exists and that band, Engineer, has just released their debut full length, Reproach. Engineer have proven that you don’t need 10 minute long songs and stretches of similarly structured chord progressions to be doom. In fact, they wonderfully create 3 to 5 minute mini-epics. If it would make it easier to audiblize their sound, imagine Isis under the constraints of only being allowed to create songs with running times under 4 minutes. Frankly, they’re probably not capable of it, but Engineer is.

You don’t need an entire hour of your life to appreciate a batch of songs from Engineer—you only need three quarters of the time. The beauty of their music comes in their ability to take the best parts of the doom and gloom metal bands surrounding them, infusing those parts with a little bit of grind, to crank out gems that don’t drag on for ages.

The perfect example of this is the song “Shiner” where, in a little under 2 minutes time, the band creates a pulsating, rhythmic outpouring of downtrodden emotion which would have felt indulgent if stretched out past its running time. It doesn’t feel short. It doesn’t feel cut off. It doesn’t feel underdeveloped. No, it feels just right.

Engineer isn’t simply a neutered version of Isis or a darker take on Botch. They are the gateway drug that could take your everyday metalhead and open his or her eyes to the wonders of the doom metal heroin that’s right there for the taking. They’re tempting, and you know you want it. So just do it. Grab that needle and shoot up. Once you do, though, there’s no turning back. Engineer will show you the path of the doom addiction that awaits you.

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