According to Wikipedia, “a rogue planet is a planetary-mass object that orbits a galactic center directly. Such objects have been ejected from the planetary system in which they formed or have never been gravitationally bound to any star or brown dwarf.” Such planets can emerge because of escaping an orbit as a result of some cataclysm. There were already a lot of cataclysms in 2020 so the second album from Israeli Death Metal band Chugun, called Rogue Planet displays all the craziness of nowadays pretty good.
Chugun (“cast iron” in Russian) was formed in 2010. Four years of “pen tests”, searches of their own sound, rehearsing and in 2014 the band already compete in Wacken Metal Battle. In 2015 the debut album Virus was released, where the band combined oldschool Thrash and Death Metal with female extreme vocals. An album got some good reviews and in 2016 Chugun goes to the European tour. After some time the band’s line-up has changed and today Chugun is trio: Yani Sizov (vocals, bass) Timur Sizov (guitars) and Nir Baruch (drums).
Rogue Planet contains 30 minutes of brutal, bonecrushing Death Metal with some Thrash and Groove elements. The first song “Simulacra” lets the listener know what to expect further: fast, solid guitar riffs and low growls, which you don’t expect from pretty blond vocalist. The next one “Predatory Prey” doesn’t reduce the pace, equally balancing between Groove and Death.
“Happiness” has nothing common with its name: the speed and aggression of Thrash Metal, which transform into Death Metal brutality, are running extremely high here, turning this song into probably the toughest one from this album. Also Nir Baruch did a great job here, delivering interesting drum patterns and tons of blast beats.
“Idiot’s Guide” suddenly changes the mood with melodic, almost Heavy Rock’-n’-Roll intro that rapidly goes to fierce and fast paced Death Metal. Yani raises her voice in some moment to scream and that adds more brutality and anger to the song, then Timur surprises again with melodic solo to match the intro. Nevertheless, the pace is slowing down in choruses sharply and transitions from verses to choruses are rough. With this, self-titled “Rogue Planet”, which has also lots of pace changes, sounds much more seamless if it can be said about meaty rigid Death.
“Extinction Cycle” starts slow but then immediately rush off to already familiar fast tempo. Nir shines again in this song with his drumming and Yani lowering her vocals maximally. “Andromeda” has nothing unnecessary, falling from the first note on the listener with all its heaviness and potency. And the album ends with fast and ominous “Gravitational Collapse” with Thrash Metal elements. I can’t say it’s the heaviest song in the album, but probably the most haunting. Lots of tempo changes, short but important musical elements and guitar solo with peculiar melody make this song one of the most diverse in Rogue Planet; the declamation in the end with the evil riff makes you feel the foretaste of the collapse I was talking in the beginning of this review.
Also I need to say about some lacks, or the one lack, to be exact. The sound here is too clean and too tidy, as for me – I really expected a little bit more roughness and sharpness. At the same time I have no complaints about the quality of the record. So maybe the sound of the album is just my personal problem.
But all in all Rogue Planet became brutal, solid and quite diverse album, as it can be within oldshool Death Metal. Add here female extreme vocal, which is rare in Death or Thrash Metal and you’ll get the album you don’t want to miss.
Rogue Planet will be released on June, 30.
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