Atlantis Chronicles – Barton’s Odyssey

So the face of eddie w2rote alot

bUYT I AM TAKING THIS OVER,. TERQUILA AND GROWERS HAVE SHOWN ME THE WAYYYYYY

ATLANTIS CHRONICLES IS FUCKING GREAT IF YOU HAVENT LISTENED TO ALOT TECH DEATH

TECH DEATH IS LIKE THE WEIRD SAW BLADE PILL TO LISTEN TO ooooo caps on

I give this album 10000 leagues of awesome. I have listened to this album at least 20 times and I just really like it,

 

Imperator

drunk

 

Atlantis Chronicles – Barton’s Odyssey (Released February 19, 2016 – Apathia Records)

When Imperator suggested we review this album I was vocally sceptical; both the band name and album title scream power metal with the cheese factor turned to 12 and with him, that is not terribly out of character… I less dove as tentatively dipped my toes into Barton’s Odyssey.

As my big toe entered the lapping waves a silky smooth, slightly accented, male voice, pulled me under. Like the opening to a movie, this narrator provided interest then gave way to the substance of the album; pure French technical death metal. Not to be confused with the hatred infused brilliance of the Quebecois technical death metal scene, Atlantis Chronicles hail from Paris and strike with the power of French death metal behind them. Littered with moments of brilliance; slippery and technical bass, gorgeous cleans, and moments of guitar capable of causing emotional relief, Barton’s Odyssey is plagued with dragging moments of -core. Overproduction, a brickwalled and empty mix causing the guitars to become sterile and feel more programmed than played and the vocals are washed out just enough to bring an angsty post-metal vibe which clashed with the worn-out tech deth feeling.

The juxtaposition of greatness and missed opportunity is evident early on with the track Otis Barton, named for the albums muse. A poorly balanced combination of breakdowns and slippery tapping burden the track and the closing gorgeous feel solo barely saves it from total loss. The middle of the album displays Atlantis Chronicles creativity and causes me my greatest pause and confusion in my feelings for Barton’s Odyssey; I find I am hating myself for enjoying this record. The tremolos to open Within the Massive Stream are fantastic, frantic and searching they crash into harmonizing guitars while blast beats permeate everything. Upwelling Part’s I and II are easily the best parts of Barton’s Odyssey. Totally unexpected clean vocals emerged from Upwelling Part I. I was tired of the simplistic repetition of the album thus, the cleans were a welcome surprise. Then the proggy moments took over with a clean-ish chording section which placed the vocals and drums to the back. More experimental and adventurous than the rest of the album Upwelling Part I make up for the lack of innovation. The execution of a concept album is immensely difficult yet Atlantis Chronicles hold their own. The spoken word moments were done with utmost sincerity and took nothing away from the album, adding in spades each time words were uttered.

The stigma that the back half of albums are filler comes mostly, I feel, from the listener tiring. With similar phrasing, riffs, and runs blend together, the interesting moments at the beginning of an album begin to sound replayed… Barton’s Odyssey is an example of this as Atlantis Chronicles have come out to populate a tired scene with retrod ideas. Tracks such as Flight of the Manta and I, Atlas were disorienting and disappointing. Gorgeous sections would devolve into mindless breakdowns and insane display of skill got lost in the shear wall of noise. By the end of the album, I was tired of tech death, ready to move on to something different, the diversity from Upwelling Part I or Within the Massive Streams was nice but, oppressive brickwalling was a thing.

An up and down album, Barton’s Odyssey had a lot of what I love in technical metal, some wonderful proggy moments, and flashes of potential, but the group was too hung up on heaviness. Instead of letting the chill prog and oppressive technicality weave together Atlantis Chronicles went for massive breakdowns and unnecessarily ridiculous riffs and sweeps, failing to show proper restraint and the album was worse off for it.

Rating: 5/10

-TheFaceofEddie

 

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