Spoiler alert! The new Gorguts album, Colored Sands, rules. But you knew that already. The band that put Canadian death metal on the map—with Considered Dead and Erosion of Sanity—and then sent death metal into fits of spiral rage on 1998’s Obscura and 2001’s From Wisdom to Hate have returned, with class, chops, and curveballs intact. What’s funny is that few liked the “new” Gorguts in the late ’90s. Few understood leader Luc Lemay’s atonal song structures. Few reacted violently to what they didn’t understand. Almost Schönberg-like, if you will. Then again, several acknowledged the music behind the math and the meditative qualities of chaos, praising it, hailing it as an advancement, a quantum leap.
In 2013, Gorguts returns! With an all-star American lineup oddly enough. Enlisting drummer John Longstreth (Origin), Kevin Hufnagel (Dysrhythmia), and Colin Marston bassist (Behold the Arctopus, Krallice), Lemay solidified Gorguts as next-level next level death. “The collaboration with John, Colin and Kevin was awesome! They made this project very stimulating for me. They’re very creative, intelligent people, amazing Artists, great individuals, and great instrumentalists,” said Lemay in a recent Invisible Oranges interview. A clap of hands to that!
Even in times when complicated, busy death metal is accepted (more now than ever before), Gorguts floors everything on Colored Sands. They just think differently than most, refusing to ape their peers (and themselves) when ideas run dry. Take, for example, the title track, “Colored Sands.” There’s space, a sense of economy, of unbridled chaos opening up for brief moments to allow for introspection. And then it comes. The quirky, skronky movements. The chug of chugs behind serpentine riffs. In short, it’s challenging—mentally and instrumentally—but superb example of death metal living and breathing, thinking.
“The song “Colored Sands” tells the story about the intricate, poetic, mystic ritual of drawing sand mandalas,” says Lemay. “Tibetan pilgrims can walk for months, sometime a whole year, prostrating face to the ground every tree footsteps until they reach the place where the mandala will be executed. Once the mandala completed, the monks will dismantle the mandala, and take the sands to the closest stream of water. This stream will bring the sands to the river, the river to the immensity of the ocean to spread the mandala’s peace and beauty to the planet. The single harmonic, in the beginning of the song, pictures a single grain of sand hitting the ground…then with the pattern in 5 slowly appearing, illustrates the five elements in the Tibetan philosophy such as: air, water, fire, earth and space which are embodied in the mandala through their specific colors. From there the mandala slowly takes form in the music.”
** Gorguts new album, Colored Sands, is out August 30th on Season of Mist Records. It’s available HERE for pre-order on CD, LP (various colors), and as a t-shirt pack. Limitless options for eggheads and physicists alike!