Album Review: Triptykon - "Eparistera Daimones"

Metal forefather and steadfast veteran Tom Warrior—pardon me—Thomas G. Warrior has embarked on this new journey called Triptykon, shedding the mortal coil or Celtic Frost and venturing into new territory. At his side is a cadre of talented metal veterans, and together they released “Eparistera Daimones,” a compendium of pulsating, thundering metal.

The album is a dark, beat-driven, evil affair that illustrates the panoply of visceral images rattling around the band’s respective crania. The lead track “Goetia” kicks off with an imaginative dichotomy of stretched, anguished guitar notes built over the top of a destructive percussive assault.

The album contains a certain sense of foreboding from beginning to end much like fellow gore metallers Autopsy. There’s this unspoken promise that no idea is too macabre, no image too mercilessly violent, no soul too irreversibly tainted to be excluded from the festering, shadowy cauldron that the band conjures.

Following the opener is “Abyss Within My Soul,” a song that is simply a deep dirge of despair. It wends and meanders a path through nine minutes of eerie, ghoulish specters and demonic vocals.

“Eparistera Daimones” does a number of things well. The experimental nature of combining flighty, loose guitar with a drum that never stops leaves some interesting marks. Furthermore, the band’s willingness to leave their lonesome guitar naked without support for song intros is rare in metal. The album is very drawn out, but is never truly boring and under no circumstances could be called generic. The lack of traditional song structure and a verse-chorus-verse paradigm means that the album has no bounds and is safe to wander into strange territory. If all that sounds like I’m damning the album with faint praise, it’s because I might very well be.

While “Goetia” and “Abyss Within My Soul” are effective for what they are, they weigh in at over twenty minutes combined, and lead into “In Shrouds Decayed,” a song that really does nothing for three more. It eventually progresses and has some surprising similarities to Soundgarden’s “Slaves and Bulldozers,” but by that point, listeners may have given up. Nothing keeps the people hooked like a twenty minute two song set and three minutes of ambient guitar with choked growling.

Following a throw away called “Shrine,” we hit some tender meat with “A Thousand Lies,” which is the album’s most rhythmic, cohesive, digestible song. “Descendant,” right after is the album’s only song that features (at the end,) what might be called guitar soloing, and on top of that is the only track that really showcases any virtuosity of any single instrument.

“Eparistera Daimones” feels like it was meant to have the same kind of impossibly gritty appeal as the aforementioned Autopsy or Abscess, but fails in that attempt because it takes so long to get anywhere. Those other bands’ ability to give the listener some ultra-ugly instant gratification in their metal is what carries the day for them; Triptykon showcases some ingenuity and talent, but refuses to get to the point, so to speak. As a sort of ill-fitting coda, I had a stray thought while listening to this album; it might make a strangely appropriate soundtrack to the upcoming “Doom 4.” Just sayin’.

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