HAUNTER "Discarnate Ails"

By Dr. Abner Mality

Befitting their name, there is something ghostly and otherworldly in the epic music created by this Texas band. The strange melodies and tones embedded in these three lengthy tunes create imagery of other dimensions while still keeping a solid death/black metal core.

I would describe their music as ornate and intricate. "Progressive" would not be an out of place word to use as well. First track "Overgrown With the Moss" starts with eerie, subdued melody before ripping fast black metal kicks in. HAUNTER use a lot of jangly, effects-drenched guitar sounds to construct baroque tunes. The deep vocal grumbles give them a death metal touch, but overall, I would say they have more of a black metal approach, with plenty of hammering drumwork. The songs are constantly shifting in riff and manage to keep your interest even over songs more than 10 minutes in length. In fact, the 14 minute "Chained at the Helm of the Eschaton" bucks the rampant trend of overlong boring songs and has a soaring, majestic feel, building to a powerful climax before ending in the same kind of restrained eeriness that started the album.

This is extreme metal for the thinking man, heavy on atmosphere and rich in structure. Well worth exploring for the adventurous listener.