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Origin has always been in the forefront within the branch of brutal and technical death metal. The sound within said branch is after all fairly narrow and few manage to become more than mere Suffocation clones. Origin broke free from that moniker by a combination of über technical instrumental work and a dynamic within the song writing that makes their tunes as catchy as the genre goes.
'Unparalleled Universe' sets off in the very same direction. Not much new under the sun but another well-crafted Origin effort. Aggressive (bordering insane) drumming, surgically precise guitar work and well-honed songwriting spells the recipe for another success. The multiple vocals add further dynamics and are all high quality. The razor sharp production serves the songs well and the mix allows the delicate bass line just the amount of presence needed to complete the serving.
For the first eight and a half songs this is nothing but a solid eight pointer, but then something happens. Halfway through 'Unequivocal' the sounded changes into more solemn and restrained. There are another two similar passages preceding this one on the album, both of which serves a purpose of giving the listener some time to gather the many impressions and does not affect the overall atmosphere. In 'Unequivocal' though, the latter half of the song could best be described as heavily power metal influenced and breaks the flow of the album completely. If this particular part was not awful enough, the closing Brujeria cover is nothing short of abysmal (and not in a good sense). A testament if anything to the fact that not everything that is broken can be fixed.
My further encounters with 'Unparalleled Universe' will be strictly confined to the first eight and a half songs. As I now judge the album as a whole, though, I have no choice but to deduct a point. Anyone who follows the aforementioned listening strategy though are in for a true treat! Origin has shown time and another that they belong in the absolute top league within their field and 'Unparalleled Universe' shows no signs (well, almost) of a band heading towards meltdown.
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