Written by Carcassbomb
- Costly Signals
- Progressive Metal
- Adelaide, Australia
- March 27, 2020
Australia is no stranger to progressive metal with bands like Ne Obliviscaris, Be’Lakor, Caligula’s Horse and a bunch more. Dyssidia have produced what very well may be the best progressive metal album of the year. It’s huge and it’s full of outsider influences that help skirt the usual trappings of the genre. The album art is by Adam Burke who I will never get tired of, his style is as versatile as this album.
The opening of “Infinitesimal” is straight killer and unexpected, it’s a very mathcore vocal style. There’s a huge amount of genre play across the whole album which keeps it interesting even if it’s not always hit. The vocalist Mitch, has an intense range on both clean and unclean vocals, he also has a very good sense of placement within the compositions. The higher cleans aren’t boring or cringe like a lot of the mediocre prog bands, there’s actual texture and jive to the voice. It reminds me of a lot of albums I like going from Mike Patton and Adultery by Dog Fashion Disco to obscure Brisbane bands like Conversations With The Sun and Dead Letter Opener. It kinda sounds like the best bits of everything, there’s no fall from grace.
Theatrics are the primary lifeforce of Costly Signals and as such the song writing is very complex and always has a driving purpose. It’s expressed elegantly and with a high level of technique. Super well rounded and effective. The keys and guitar lay the foundation of the sound with some bright melodies and classical fingerpicking. The bass is perky with a bit of funk, it gets incredibly fast at some points and has a very clean tone, it almost sounds more machine than man. The drumming plays two roles, either holding back for the sake of the instruments to flourish or absolutely chopping it with blasts of rhythm.
Each track is distinct and have memorable moments that will trigger glee in your brain when they pop up. It’s an album everyone will want to sing along to but no one will have the chops to pull it off. It’s slick but also heavy, the clean elements aren’t glam or power in anyway, the focus is on the progressive elements. That can mean a lot things at any given time, the music is very flexible.
If you enjoy a good progressive metal album then Costly Signals is a sure bet.
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