Candiria - _Surrealistic Madness_
(Too Damn Hype, 1995)
by: Brian Meloon (8 out of 10)
Candiria are a NY band exploring the fertile territory of jazz-metal. This has a fresh sound, as it's only vaguely similar to the other bands who've incorporated jazz into metal (Atheist, Cynic, Pestilence, Spastic Ink, Naked City/John Zorn, Alex Masi). Their style is roughly death metal crossed with jazz. There are sections of pure jazz, sections of pure (though not extremely heavy) death metal, and sections of mixtures of the two. The death sections are sometimes straightforward, but the jazz influence creeps in both rhythmically and tonally, ranging from very dissonant and strange to pretty technical. Vocals are shouted and not very guttural, but distorted, and fit the music well. Guitar and bass work are solid, and the drumming is excellent: really moving some of the sections along. It's usually dense and varied, with some occasionally fast double bass work. The album as a whole has a little too much jazz for me, as approximately half of the (45-minute) disc are taken up by pure jazz (including the last 10 minutes of the last track), but a lot of the metallic parts are excellent.

(article published 9/6/1996)

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