Tech-Death Tuesday: Pavor and Harakiri Offer Blasts From The Past Still Worth Revering As Classics
Hey there tech-fiends! Since variety is the spice of life, I figured I'd do an edition of TDT focused on underground tech-death classics of old that not everyone knows about. Though to be clear, I do think technical death metal as a genre is really coming into its own now as of the last few years. But like all music genres, the bigger a sound becomes, the more you tend to hear groups ape their idols with nothing of their own brought to the table with it. Which is why even new music craving freaks like me sometimes yearn for past bands who had their own unique stamp on technical death metal. I hope you dig Harakiri and Pavor, and if you happen to know one, hopefully you don't know the other! If you want to peruse prior editions of this series. you can do so here.
I'm covering Pavor knowing full and well that some tech-death heads out there will already know about them. But since the band has always had a mysterious kvlt deal going on, a lot of people have still never heard of them. Based in Germany, Pavor have been active since 1987, yet have only released two full-lengths, an EP, and demos in that entire time span to date. But they more then make up for it with a meticulous quality over quantity minded output. Their last record, 2003's Furioso, is the one I'll be discussing today as it's my favorite of theirs. Furioso was way ahead of the curve as far as some of the more modern dissonant black metal, jazz, and unorthodox progressive strains of modern technical death metal are concerned. Having started in 1987, they brought with them the spirit and dark nature of early death metal, but what they fused it with on Furioso makes for a listening experience unlike anything else in the genre. What Furioso also brings to the table that many of their peers lack, is a more intriguing variety of song structures that bend and shift into various paths over repeating the same parts ad nauseam. If you've never heard this gem before, I highly suggest you do so now!
Harakiri-Twilight Of The Idols
Indianapolis based technical death metal unit Harakiri started back in 1997, and according to Metal-Archives, are still listed as active. I recently saw the band post about a one-off upcoming reunion show so who knows what might happen! For now, the band's most recent record is their 2002 underground classic, Twilight Of The Idols, which was released by Willowtip Records, and still stands as a unique experience that holds up to the music their modern peers have delivered. Opener " You Too Can Have Your Own Crank Lab" makes it abundantly clear that this album is going to be chaotic, full of evil grooves, and one hell of a brutal experience filtered through a technical death metal lens. At just under 30 minutes, Twilight Of The Idols delivers one of the more interesting distillations of death metal taken to a tech-death extreme that I've ever heard. I've been listening to this since the year it came out and it still kicks my ass every time! At the time it was released it definitely received the praise it deserved, but over the years their this album has gone under-appreciated in today's sometimes more homogeneous sounding technical death metal genre. To pick a personal favorite as a starting point, I suggest hitting play on the hyper shredtacular evisceration that is track three, "Ad Infinitum". But really, this record is fantastic and quite varied from song to song all the way through.