Veil of Maya’s [id] is the third full-length album from the Barrington, Illinois deathcore quartet. It is an album full of intricate, brutal riffing mixed masterfully with complex, often beautiful (relatively), melodies. The question is how does it fare as a full listening experience? Well, click that button down below to find out!
Casting aside the intro track, [id], we’ll dive into ‘Unbreakable’, a track that starts with chaotic, disorganized, frantic guitar riffing before finding the groove hidden underneath. This track gives a perfect example of what to expect from the rest of the album: There are complicated melody lines mixed with dissonant, thick riffs that are all combined into a catchy, head-bang inducing song. Brandon Butler’s vocals are a mixture of guttural growls and higher pitched screams that produce surprisingly positive lyrics: Now is the time to believe in yourself/Have no fear how others think of you or will judge you. Drummer Sam Applebaum is very clever in knowing when to hold back and when to let loose.
The production of the album could stand to be a bit stronger. The mix between the guitars and the drums isn’t done all that well and makes it hard to hear specific intricacies in the drums. The bass also has a sound that easily gets lost in the mix. There is a low end presence, however because the bass often is playing harmonies to the guitar lines, a tone that cuts through the mix a bit more would have been appreciated. The guitars have a very tight, somewhat processed tone. I don’t say this in a bad way: Rather, it makes for a unique sound that never becomes grating or unpleasant through the record. The addition of synths sprinkled here and there spice up the tracks and make for some very interesting moments.
Overall, [id] is an album that I can easily see myself coming back to for repeated listens. It is a solid, complex album where more and more can be extracted with each listen.
4 out of 5 skulls