Home > Music > Vektor – Outer Isolation (2011)

Vektor – Outer Isolation (2011)

So if you’ve been paying attention to this blog, you’ll notice that I was a fan of this band’s previous album, Black Future, and its ‘progressive’ approach to thrash metal. Outer Isolation takes that approach and strips out most of the fat in favor of more concise, aggressive songwriting, with riffs that are best described as ‘insane’, or ‘highly chromatic and intricate’ if you’re into actually doing a good job of describing things.

Amongst other things, the band continues rerecording tracks from Demolition here, and said tracks are closer to what we saw on the previous album, with more consonant melodies and more complex song structures. The new songs, on the other hand, have more complex riffing, showing all sorts of chord patterns and rhythms. For instance, the first track, “Cosmic Cortex” is 10 minutes of ripping, Voivod style riffing (In that it’s frequently dissonant, and uses many if not all of the strings on a guitar), outside its relatively placid, albeit tension inducing intro. The next two tracks (Echoless Chamber and Dying World) share the same formula of midpaced beginnings, and then turning into frenzied thrashers midway thorugh. Personally, I find “Dying World” to have the better riffs of the two, in that they’re melodic while retaining the typical dissonant edge. Of the rerecordings, “Tetrastructural Minds” is my favorite – it rivals not only the Black Future tracks for melodic prowness, but retains the intensity of the new stuff. I took the opportunity to listen to the original version of it on the “Demolition” demo – the basic structure  and riffing was there, albeit played slightly slower, due to the lack of 4 years of extra practice.

Basically, this album has simpler, more obvious song structuring than its predecessor (so no “Forests of Legend”). The riffing, on the other hand, has improved substantially – take what I said about Cosmic Cortex, and apply it to the rest of the songs – all sorts of chord shapes, and a variety of rhythms. Essentially, all of the members have improved their abilities – the drummer plays more varied parts, the bass is more audible, the guitars are more technical (dur), and David Disanto’s trademark screeches are even more abrasive here, although he occasionally experiments with a more melodic form of delivery. Whether this is enough to outbalance the simplification of song structures from “Black Future” is up to the reader.

Highlights: “Echoless Chamber”, “Dying World”, “Tetrastructural Minds”, “Outer Isolation”.

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