Written by: PP on 12/05/2009 19:02:10

Oslo, Norway based Kaospilot have spent six years touring on and off promoting their previous release, an original screamo styled record which received universal acclaim from the fans, but failed to reach great international recognition, possibly because of the band's location. Now the band are finally ready with a new album, "Shadows", an avant-garde screamo record that combines the old school 'original' scream sound as well as more recent hardcore influences in the form of Poison The Well-esque experimentation.

After one of those pointless feedback intros, "When The Wind Turns Her Hand" starts the record off with some faded drumming and guitars, before the vocalist launches into his raw scream full of the sort of immediacy and urgency most new bands lack in the genre. The band then goes on to explore a great number of different time signatures, a good example being "The Indian Became A Thunderbird", where the band seamlessly shifts between breakneck speed mathcore to slower atmospheric artsy screamo. The drumming is incredible, by the way, ranging from rapid-fire bashing to more precision-controlled rhythmic waves that drive the song forward, consequently resulting in the avant-garde feel. There's a focus on lengthy discordant passages and open-ended notes to forge chaotic atmospheres, but at the same time the band isn't afraid to fully utilize the classic quiet/loud dynamic as seen on a song like "Ad Infinitum". Tremolo guitars are no stranger to Kaospilot's music either, and they have the effect of transforming the atmosphere into an exceptionally dark and bleak one, certainly much harsher than on most screamo records.

The production is nothing short of brilliant: the band have realized that the clean-cut style of bands like Alesana won't do any good to their sound, and have therefore left it just at the brink of raw and crystal-clear; all instruments are perfectly positioned in the mix, but there's still an underlying sense of pure darkness and mystery to the band's music. A good example is the album's true gem "Colossus", which has an explosive start that turns into beautiful screamo experimentation rarely seen even on the other side of the pond. The production allows for a vibe of controlled chaos without taking any of the artsy avant-gardeness away from the band's sound - think early Fear Before The March Of Flames records here.

Kaospilot's "Shadows" essentially arrives from around the corner as a completely unexpected guest to the European screamo/hardcore scene. Few people outside Norway are familiar with the band and that's what I'm hoping to change with this review. They should be able to turn some heads across the pond as well for two reasons: firstly, the reference the old school screamo sound while bringing a modern element into it, and secondly, there just aren't any weak tracks on the record. It might not be a full-blown masterpiece but it's a damn good record.


Download: Colossus, The Indian Became A Thunderbird, Ad Infinitum
For the fans of: Poison The Well, Funeral Diner, Orchid, Fear Before, Hot Cross
Listen: Myspace

Release date 09.03.2009
Fysisk Format

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