Xerath - III

8.2 | 112 votes |
Release date: 15 September 2014
Style: Symphonic math metal


87 have it
16 want it

01. I Hold Dominion
02. 2053
03. I Hunt For The Weak
04. Autonomous
05. Bleed This Body Clean
06. Death Defiant
07. Sentinels
08. Passenger
09. Ironclad
10. Demigod Doctrine
11. The Chaos Reign
12. Witness
13. Veil Pt. 1
14. Veil Pt. 2

Richard Thomson - vocals, orchestration, programming
Conor McGouran - guitars
Michael Pitman - drums, vocals, orchestration, programming
Chris Clarke - bass

Session musicians
Owen Hughes - violin
Julian Chan - viola
Stefan Knapik - cello
Billy Phillips - backing vocals
Trish Boynton - backing vocals

Additional info
Produced by Xerath.
Cover art: Colin Marks.

Staff review by
Harmony of elements can be a truly spectacular thing. While metal and symphony have formed many remarkable unions in the past, Xerath's more modern approach seeks continual refinement in order to leave their own impression on the unison. One would assume some simple math would apply here; I + II = III, ergo this album is more than just another number in a discographical sequence, and is the sum of the band's studio strengths. Yet simple math metal this is not, the polyrhythmic driven effort to meld the two elements in a refreshing way requires more than a simple approach, which leads to the question: is the third time the charm?

published 14.09.2014 | Comments (10)

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Comments: 10   Visited by: 468 users
26.06.2014 - 19:49
J. N.
Account deleted
Candlelight Records today confirms September 16 as the North American release date for III, the new album from England's Xerath. Producer Jacob Hansen (Volbeat, Epica) returns to work with the band on the near 70-minute, 14-song recording. It features artwork by Colin Marks (Suicide Silence, Sylosis, Oceano). Official pre-order for the album will begin August 5 via ITunes, Amazon and other physical and digital music outlets.

Xerath serve up a healthy dose of masterful musicianship and dazzling melody. "Xerath gets the balance right in mashing symphonic arrangements and metal into seamless songs," says Terrorizer while Metal Sucks notes the band mix, "equal parts high drama and snug, well-built riffage." Continuing to expand the band's seasoned sonic complexity, III welcomes new guitarist Conor McGouran, "I am absolutely thrilled to be a part of Xerath", chimes McGouran. "I was real nervous initially as I was replacing such an amazing player (Owain Williams) but thankfully we immediately gelled as musicians and have become good friends in the process."

III features a refinement of elements that have now become a unique signature for the band. "We branched out more and enlisted the help of various live performers, such as a live string quartet, classically trained altos and sopranos, to give this album the level of production it required" shares drummer Michael Pitman. "As we always have, we recorded at multiple studios to capture the sound we were looking for. The biggest addition to the sound this time around is Conor. He had some huge shoes to fill and the first thing we looked for in a guitarist was that he was able to keep that real, soulful element. Conor got this straight away and in him I think people will hear a guitarist who can give you those special moments but then floor you in an instant with savage speed and outright technique. There is a real danger to his playing."

Xerath have honed their live chops at numerous festivals over the years. 2013 alumni for Bloodstock (along with Voivod, Scar Symmetry, Xentrix, Firewind) and CandleFest (alongside labelmates Altar Of Plagues, October File, Crown), the band recently headlined the Metal Hammer-sponsored UK TechFest in Bristol. Pitman says, "TechFest is growing in the UK year on year and Xerath are proud to have been part of its evolution. The gig was amazing and was, for our fans, the first chance to see us play with Conor. It was a solid show."

One of those unsung gems music fans simply need to hear, Xerath joined the Candlelight roster in 2009. The Basingstoke-based four-piece found a moderate early fan base with the release of their full-length debut. Ultimate Metal said, "you will not find much out there with this degree of sonic perfection." Two years later the band followed up with the fortified II. Metal Observer noted, "II is a flurry of hard hitting rhythms making for an intense listen that pulls its audience back and forth." Recalling the recording process of III, Pitman notes, "towards the end of the recording when we started piecing together all the elements, there was a special moment when we all looked at each other and thought we had genuinely made something special. There's no doubt about it."
26.06.2014 - 21:48
Rating: 7
Weirdo of MS

We have the album of the year.
2016 - 2017
2018 - 2019
19.09.2014 - 01:14
Rating: 8
Doge of Venice
01.10.2014 - 00:15
Rating: 7
Weirdo of MS
It's very good. But not as much as I or II imo
2016 - 2017
2018 - 2019
01.10.2014 - 21:49
Rating: 9
Ambitious, epic and majestic in all the right ways, and yet Xerath's third album is never as self-indulgent as half-expected it to be. It's the perfect stepping stone for a sound progression from the band's previous two albums, and here it seems as if everything which made those particular albums so effective has been taken further a few notches. For me one of the best prog metal albums of 2014 so far, highlights being "I hold Domination", "2053", "Demigod Doctrine" and the two-part closer "Veil".
02.10.2014 - 17:42
Rating: 7
Good, Is like a synphonic Meshuggah
04.12.2014 - 20:39
Rating: 9
Mehdi Taba
Mehdi Taba
Definitely their best album 'til now, new guitarist and new sound is more better, I like increasing the Gojira influence on this one (Groove)! "8.6"
05.02.2015 - 08:54
Rating: 9
M C Vice
So Devin Townsend's in Saturnian now?
"Another day, another Doug."
"I'll fight you on one condition. That you lower your nipples."
" 'Tis a lie! Thy backside is whole and ungobbled, thou ungrateful whelp!"
12.02.2015 - 18:57
This was an interesting listen. It gets kinda boring towards half of the album, too many songs for what the albums has to offer, I guess.
I could dance to that "2053" song anytime, though.
28.02.2015 - 17:16
Rating: 9
In Bone Factory
Symphonic Album of the year \m/
a hammerhead goobrian

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