Album Review: Ara – Jurisprudence 8.5 (Death Metal)

Written by Carcassbomb

  • Ara
  • Juriprudence
  • Technical Death Metal
  • Milwaukee, Wisconsin
  • May 15, 2020
  • 8.5/10

Long wormy kind of crawling technical death metal. This a death project consisting of three members of Northless, a sludge/post metal band, so it’s pretty evident that they are more comfortable playing in that longer form. It’s pretty damn good. The artwork is by Eliran Kantor, who is a metal art superstar right now and much like Adam Burke, his work varies with each piece and has a long lifespan. It’s a fantastic wrapping for this sound.

Artwork by Eliran Kantor

Have I said THE CHASM today? Well now I have. Like everything remotely technical, dark and long, I’m comparing this to THE CHASM is overall aesthetic. It’s a style I will always enjoy – one of those albums that’s almost death doom because of the mixing and writing but leans too hard into the death side of that to count. Bands like Moteriferum or Void Rot. Jurisprudence does reach some intensive speeds though, it often coils all the sounds and pummels out brutal death segments that hit hard. There’s a bunch of changes throughout that will keep your ear bent, it has that entertainment value.

The ending of “Etymologicide” stood out a lot to me, it spends a couple of minutes with a drum led kind of breakdown with the guitars spitting off little riffs and licks to either side. It was kind of like they were all just playing on their own but together and they were very comfortable doing it. It was very different and calls back to those post metal roots that give freshness to the approach of this death metal album. The drumming is crucial, always delivering with a very pronounced tone and good sense of arrival.

Ara: Bandcamp / Facebook

The guitars tend to be very loud with excessive gain no matter what is going on. Half of the actual sludge sound to the album is just the dripping from the distorted sustain. It’s thick, they seem to have control over it. All the guitars are apparently done by Jerry Hauppa which accounts for the song writing differences – the riffs are well arranged to compliment each other. Sometimes they will glide with atmosphere and other times they become mechanical drills.

This is Ara’s first album since 2014 and they have definitely returned with a vigor. This album places very nicely into the 2020 arena of lofi sounding kinda cosmic crushing death. It has a lot of exciting moments that reveal themselves when you least expect it, at worst it might drill on a little too long in some places.


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