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Paradeigma is the third release to come from Agnesis, whose base of Perth is a veritable wellspring of Australian progressive rock and metal talent. Given their hometown’s reputation, Agnesis has a lot to live up to.
On Ransack and Obolos the band shows off the more metal side of its personality, a facet more dominant and developed. Agnesis really play to their strengths on these, contrasting light and shade as they weave short, sustained outbursts of harsh rasping from Daniel Christoffersen and more mellifluous vocals into a directed, focused pair of melodic progressive metal tracks. Of the two, Ransack is the clear standout, built around a pacey chugging riff with the vocal harmonies of Christoffersen and Josie Crosby posing a stark contrast to the guitarist’s darker growls, all adding to the musical tension. It’s a track so good that it completely outshines the other three.
Agnesis show clear potential on Paradeigma
After the elegant rollercoaster of this opening track, the rest of Paradeigma feels a little underwhelming. Swamp is a longer, more contemplative piece, but somewhat listless and a bit too long. It feels like treading water and takes a backseat to Obolos where Agnesis regain some momentum. The final track is several minutes of Classical guitar, serving as a coda that shows off another aspect of the band’s character. It’s pretty, but perhaps would have served better as part of a longer track.
Agnesis show clear potential on Paradeigma, but will need to continue to develop its songwriting further if it wants to hold a place in the demanding world of progressive rock and metal.
STANDOUT TRACKS: Ransack, Obolos
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