Tomb Mold – “Planetary Clairvoyance” (20 Buck Spin)
Battle Helm Rating
Already making their name across 2 prior albums, these Canadians have rebounded for the 3rd time in 3 years with “Planetary Clairvoyance” – and folks, lemme tell you, it’s mightily impressive! Seemingly mixing the best of the old school with the new and indeed the world, there are traits of Demilich sitting comfortably alongside Incantation, but on “Planetary Clairvoyance”, Tomb Mold have taken it to a whole new league, hitting a home run well into outer space on the 7 tracks making up this amazing album. While handling all the death metal staples of blast beating, guttural vocals and monstrous riff attacks with excellence and vigour, it’s the superior arrangements, unbelievable grooves and impeccably placed technical wizardry that stand this music head and shoulders above the rest. From the fiery whirring opening to ‘Planetary Clairvoyance (They Grow Inside Pt 2)’, Max Klebanoff’s hyperbolic drumming and dry rasping roars create the pit of despair from which twin guitarists Derrick Vella and Payson Power add their twisting breaks and menacing melodies, all of which hook and snare you immediately while brilliantly captivating you at each turn of the song until its stampeding end. The main riff on the chopping ‘Accelerative Phenomenae’ is still stuck in my head thanks to the thick chundering guitars and neo classical solos along with Klebanoff’s own massive roar before the track literally takes off into diddly dee frenzy propelled by pistoning kick drums and huge tom smashes – not forgetting Steve Musgrave’s booming bass bouncing into the mix. My favourite track though, is ‘Cerulean Salvation’, reminiscent of early Death with its gargantuan main riff reeking ominously along to squeaking guitars here n there while Klebanoff’s dual attack commendably keeps up with the wild solos and equally, added massive heaviness in the slow, headbanging passages on this 5 1/2 minute epic that’s the explosive weight of a collapsing black hole! Hugely impressive, “Planetary Clairvoyance” is not only undisputed proof of a death metal centre of excellence in Toronto, but moreover, is the death metal album of the year (so far).