As a rule, I’m weary of metal bands whose logos are impossible to read. They conjure images of overpowering blast beats, masturbatory guitar fuzz and unchanging cookie monster vocals. Therefore, I didn’t think I was going to like the new EP from Boston-based Seeds of Negligence. I was wrong.
What’s immediately obvious from “Under a Godless Sky” is that these guys know something about song structure. The key word to be used here is ‘appropriate’. The drums groove and blast where necessary, never taking away from the intertwining guitars and the ever-present bass. Even the vocals, which bounce back and forth between the low and high registers, are fairly scattered and only pop up when necessary to make a particular section even more visceral.
Too often in metal, the mindset is quantity over quality, with more notes than content packed into every bar – the musical equivalent of beating someone over the head with a club. What’s nice here is that the songs aren’t overly long, and they don’t go off on tangents. They stick to the point, repeat what needs to be repeated, and let things end when they should end. This allows the guitar melodies to breathe.
All of this is showcased on the standout track “Death March”. The band chugs into action before unleashing a particularly crunchy guitar hook. Then they bring the blast – pause for effect – followed by a fluid tremolo line sung by the guitar. Truly, this is the kind of death metal you would play at a wine and cheese event; it’s that refined.
The one negative point is the goth-circus intro of “Oblivion”. Sorry, guys. This trick has been done to death and it almost always comes off as cheesy. So, if you’re listening to this album and you’re not digging the opener, give it another 50 seconds or skip it altogether because the other four tracks here are well worth your while, I promise you.
Written by Syd Ghan