January 25, 2021

Paranorm is a progressive death/thrash band from Sweden, existing since 2008. With two EPs behind their backs (released in 2011 and 2014 respectively), now, finally the time has come for the full-length debut Empyrean. The eight-track album will be released on February 26th by Redefining Darkness Records and you can already listen to the first single (linked below).

Have you ever wondered what a mash-up of Human-era Death and late Kreator would sound like? Well, if you have, then this album is the answer. Each of the eight songs presented is a mini-epic of super tight instrumentation, harsh vocals and unbelievable melodic guitar solos and harmonies all over the place. On the other hand, songs like Edge Of The Horizon and the title track, even in their 9-minute length, don’t sound exhausting or overplayed and the listener constantly feels engaged in the melody, which is always central, and not the technicality. The riffs are thrash, but the vocals and the song structure lean towards the prog-death metal genre, so there is something for the fans of both styles.

Empyrean is an album which can appeal to both the diehard Children Of Bodom fans and the old school death metal radicals who don’t recognize anything recorded past 1993. It would be a spectacle to behold when these guys hit the stage (we hope this will be soon enough!) and I think they deserve support slots for the biggest names in the genre. The sound and production by Lars Hultman are stellar, which really does songs like The Immortal Generation justice. If something was rushed or mistaken in the sound department, the overall impression would suffer and this is exactly why Chuck Schuldiner has always been a perfectionist in the studio. Just listen to the way each of the songs is constructed and you can just see Chuck’s smile somewhere up there. Paranorm is a band for the connoisseur of great music and these young musicians know how to reward the listener.

It is perhaps way too early to point out end of year highlights, but Empyrean may just be one of the first contenders. Beautiful stuff.

9,5/ 10

Paranorm in Facebook