Review: Scargod “Stay in Track!”

Review: Scargod “Stay in Track!”

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Scargod “Stay in Track!”

Austrian extreme melodic metallers Scargod have been on the scene since 2013 and produced three full-length albums to date, with Stay in Track! being the third. For the most part I’d describe them as somewhere on the lines of modern death meets melodic metal, which sounds a bit confused. They mostly manage to pull this off really well, largely due to their clear understanding of how to create a musical motif and reuse it in different ways.

This is most clearly evidenced on the track “Code – Thou Shalt Kill”, where there is a lingering intro with instruments gradually being added to the opening guitar, followed by the (almost spoken) lyric “Hello, pleased to meet you, I’m insane”. The track then becomes a contrast of two voices, the clean vocal suggesting the rational thoughts of a deranged individual and the distorted vocals the voices that he hears urging him to acts of murder in the name of religion. Throw in the parts about being “dressed in dynamite” and I think you’ll get the general drift…

The mood then shifts slightly up-tempo for “Cognitive Dissonance” but then slows again and introduces some more symphonic elements. A lot of this album sounds as though it could be used for a rather epic (and very dark) movie score, it’s built on such a grand scale.

Occasionally the balance between the clean and distorted vocals is a little bit odd to me, starting around about penultimate track “Scars of God” – this may just be personal preference though, but I think the mix is a bit odd with respect to the clean vocal. And then there’s the final track “Whorses of Boundaries”. Now I’m not quite sure if the title means that Scargod have given themselves free rein to experiment with as many styles as possible, but that’s what it sounds like! They jump about all over the place in a misplaced attempt to create the bastard offspring of 70s arena rock with extreme vocals with concept metal with who knows what? Unfortunately, this has exactly the same effect on me as the poorly chosen “bonus” track: it finishes the album with a sour taste.

Overall, this was a good example of extreme metal with a few odd moments which fortunately did not detract too much from the whole. It only remains to mention that half of the proceeds from this will be going to DEBRA Austria, a charity that supports children with a life-threatening skin condition, and that the album artwork is pretty amazing too!

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About the author

Metalhead, mother, mathematician and slave to two of the world’s most adored cats. Has been around metal for longer than might seem feasible, but it’s never long enough!

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