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Extol | The Blueprint Dives | review | metal | Lollipop


The Blueprint Dives (Century Media)
by Martin Popoff

Yer first clue would be the conundrum of a title, The Blueprint Dives mixing Scando-English and fussy intellectualism like a good In Flames or Soilwork cryptogrammatical botch. Yes, once inside this maelstrom of a record, one finds an arcane cross between Peccatum, Arcturus, Neurosis, Killing Joke, and Extol tour-mates Opeth. Bloody interesting ideas opening like a time-lapse photography flower at the rate of about four per song, the first of which is the nifty way the drums enter on track one. One of the coolest things I've heard all week (I get a lot of CDs) is the insane swelling prog build that starts at 3:40 of "In Reversal." Magnificent. Extol have actually replaced not one but two guitarists since '03's Synergy, but that hasn't lessened their blushed embarrassment of creative wealths. Even vocally, there are a number of well-chosen styles, in fact many different clean personals as well as mathcore/Zyklon-like black caw, and the drumming - see "From the Everyday Mountain Top" - is a storm of elite prog finessing. A thinking metal man's dream record, there's not much to denigrate on this surprisingly hooky and remarkably uncluttered pageant, save perhaps for a few of those vocals, which sound just a flipped lid o'er to prissy, not unlike Rufus Wainright, or at least a male Anneke. One senses the band are all too aware of the grave Importance of their mission, and a little smug that they've actually carried it off.


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