Release Date: March 4, 2008
Reviewed by Maureen Vana
If the Unearth of “The Stings of Conscience” days went to Europe, soaked up the vibe, and made a metal album the result would be Epicurean’s “A Consequence of Design”. This re-release of the band’s 2006 debut comes with a face lift that includes new art, remixed sound, and two new tracks. Loyal fans craving a follow up album to this, Epicurean’s only release, will have to hope the new tracks settle the thirst until the band’s next trip to the studio.
“A Consequence of Design” gets down to business with a hardy primal scream to start off the album in “The Author and the Architect”. What comes to follow is a mix of sweeping solos, flowing vocals, and head pounding drum beats. The band tells a story through careful organization of the tracks, which has resulted in an interesting lyrical side element and has strengthened the overall fluidity of the release.
The album does fall victim to the hard vocal/melodic vocal trend that would debatable make the album stronger without. This, some keyboard twinkling, and an occasional glam rock ballad solo, as showcased in “Anathema: The Gate Keeper”, make for a thick slice of cheese. These elements are not usually complimentary qualities, but throw in the amazing harsh vocals, catchy guitar riffs, and keyboards that actually make a song better (when they’re not twinkling) and somehow it all works.
Epicurean gradually gets harder, faster, and darker through the eleven tracks showing it’s guts at the end with “To Cast The Mourning Shadow” and “The Departure”. By the final fade out these six guys from Minnesota have convinced me that there just may be a little something epic brewing in the Midwest. Epicurean may not be a slam-dunk for fans stuck in one genre or the next, but those willing to dabble between the two will be pleasantly surprised with “A Consequence of Design’s” depth and entertainment.