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Review/ Coalesce: "Ox EP"

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With their knack for finding bands whose only mission is putting forth deathly heaviness, Relapse Records owned metal’s corner of the “naughts,” as the just-passed decade is increasingly consensually referred to. Like many of their labelmates, Coalesce is similar to a half-speed Burnt By the Sun, a far cry from the spastic-math-metal comparisons that are posted everywhere you look (Dillinger Escape Plan fans looking for similar product are strongly advised to look elsewhere).

As with the full-length Ox album of last year, this followup EP finds a way to be math and core and thrashy without using outright math-core thrashiness; the wacko-pirate vocals screech atop the complicated, mid-tempo riffing like a wounded panther attacking an elephant. Lumping this band in with Isis wouldn’t be ridiculously far off, as you may be able to tell, but this is no clone – the most accessible track, “Absent in Death,” merges Crowbar with Neurosis.

By Eric Saeger

Homepage: Coalesce
Homepage: Relapse Records

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