Artist: 
Scar Symmetry

The Singularity (Phase II – Xenotaph): Limited Edition Clear Vinyl 2LP

£34.99

Release date: 9 June, 2023

In the beginning, there was a vision of the future. Nearly two decades on, SCAR SYMMETRY are still light years ahead of the competition. It’s time for Phase II…

 

Formed in Sweden in 2004, Scar Symmetry were a unique proposition from the start. Although clearly owing a debt to the pioneering melodic death metal bands of the ‘90s, guitarist Per Nilsson and his comrades were walking their own evolutionary path. As showcased on 2005 debut Symmetric In Design, the band were driven by fervently progressive and proudly melodic instincts, infusing their often brutal riffs and arrangements with wild, futuristic atmospherics, and sublime, emotional melodies that always hit their targets with ruthless precision.

 

As Scar Symmetry moved forward, their music continued to evolve in tandem. They joined forces with Nuclear Blast Records for 2006’s breakthrough opus Pitch Black Progress (2006), and have since amassed an extraordinary catalogue of forward-thinking but irrevocably crushing modern metal. From the glossy, hyper-melodic barrage of Holographic Universe (2008), to the immaculate thunder of The Unseen Empire (2011), the Swedes have blown minds and enhanced their reputation with every artistic step.

 

Every legacy is allowed to take a pause, and Scar Symmetry have been conspicuous by their absence since concluding touring in support of 2014’s astonishing, cosmic odyssey The Singularity (Phase I - Neohumanity). The first in a planned trilogy, the album was widely praised for the sheer audacity of Nilsson’s still-mutating vision. In 2023, Scar Symmetry unveil the second chapter in this intricate, intergalactic saga: The Singularity (Phase II - Xenotaph). Harder, darker, more complex and more joyously progressive than ever, it is more than worth the nine-year wait.

 

Per Nilsson cheerfully admits that creating a follow-up to Phase I took longer than expected because, not unreasonably, he simply had other things to do, including touring the world with Meshuggah, as stand-in for the temporarily absent Fredrik Thordendal. But once he returned to the creative process, the sci-fi metal kaleidoscope quickly began to spin again.

 

As with its acclaimed predecessor, The Singularity (Phase II - Xenotaph) was created almost entirely by Per Nilsson alone. Ensconced in his home studio, colossal flights of brutal fancy like explosive opener Chrononautilus and the bewildering melo-death monolith of Scorched Quadrant were steadily pieced together, providing vocalists Lars Palmqvist and Roberth Karlsson with the most vivid and cinematic of backdrops. One thing that is immediately apparent, as Phase II clicks into gear, is that this is the most brutal record Scar Symmetry have ever made.

 

Just as the music on The Singularity (Phase II - Xenotaph) is as distinctive and destructive as anything out there, the fantastical, futuristic narrative that runs through it elevates the whole enterprise (pun intended) to an even higher plane of excellence. Begun on Phase I, this continuing story of humanity’s battle with the murderous neo-humans hits its bloody stride during Phase II: an anthology of tales from days of war…

 

Now that the world has largely woken from its Covid-induced stupor, Per Nilsson is looking forward to fully reactivating Scar Symmetry and taking the dramatic, pulverising events of Phase II to the people. Faithful to their original masterplan, these kings of metal’s celestial frontier are still way ahead of the game.

Formats: 
Vinyl LP
Label: 
Nuclear Blast
Cat#:
NB36097

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