Rating:
8.3
Unexpect - Fables Of The Sleepless Empire
31 May 2011


01. Unsolved Ideas Of A Distorted Guest
02. Words
03. Orange Vigilantes
04. Mechanical Phoenix
05. The Quantum Symphony
06. Unfed Pendulum
07. In The Mind Of The Last Whale
08. Silence This Parasite
09. A Fading Stance
10. When The Joyful Dead Are Dancing
11. Until Yet A Few More Deaths Do Us Part


The Montreal-based asylum known as Unexpect broke a 5-year silence after with their new opus Fables From The Sleepless Empire. And the least I can say is that it is a demanding listen. Absolutely insane actually! This is the toughest review I had to write seeing that there is more music to be found on the opening track than on most albums. If any musical label can be applied to these guys, only extreme avant-garde metal would do them somewhat justice. And this is just a snooty way to say I have no clue.

Despite the long hiatus, their new songs still sound like three different bands are playing at the same time and somehow sound incredible. There is an over-the-top mockery orchestration a la crazy circus enveloping a female-fronted pop/gothic band seconded by a mambo/salsa/jazz outfit and all of it nicely wrapped up by an ultra-deranged melodic death combo. Needless to say these songs feature some of the craziest arrangements you will ever hear. If you like your music linear and structured, you are out of luck. This is total musical madness. But more surprisingly, the organized chaos seems to become a shape shifter along the number of listens, creating an elaborate labyrinth of unmatched sonic landscapes. Essentially the pandemonium seems to have a life of its own. And that is where the magic happens with this band. Growls, screams and female vocals share the scene relentlessly and harmoniously despite the presence of three full-time singers. The frantic violin and hectic piano both act as the binding element between the genres. However, do not be fooled by all the extras. At the core this is brutal, even violent music. No one comes out unscathed. Most of the guitar work is memorable breakneck riffs and killer melodies. Technically this is out of this world.

Compared to their previous album In A Flesh Aquarium, this new offering has a more modern feel. Overall, I would say it is even more progressive. It also seems the gothic elements have been toned down to give the melodies more of an industrial pop texture. Regardless, Fables From The Sleepless Empire is a monumental and mature effort that demands multiple listens to fully enjoy. Simply put, it is one of the best albums of the year as long as you like manic music.

Performance: 9
Songwriting: 8
Originality: 10
Production: 9


Band profile: Unexpect
Album: Fables Of The Sleepless Empire


 


written by Demonic Tutor | 12.11.2011

Guest review by
chaosscizzors

Rating:
7.6
It seems like more often than not whenever the band Unexpect is brought up or I share a song from the band that I always seem to get a lot of the same responses; "It's too random and disjointed" or, since we're on the internet, a blatant "THAT WAS SHIT". For quite a while now I haven't been able to wrap my head around why Unexpect would be seen so negatively by metalheads. I remember one person saying something to the effect of "metal written by insane asylum patients" and my immediate thought is "well that sounds pretty damn metal."

Read more ››
published 14.02.2013 | Comments (4)



Comments

‹‹ Back to the Reviews
Comments: 16  
Users visited: 292  
Search this topic:  


PocketMetal - 12.11.2011 at 19:08  
Imo this is the best album of the year , and it is WAY better than In A Flesh Aquarium . I love to listen to this from start to finish , a great experience .

thanks for the review ( but my score would be 9.5ish , this is perfection )
best thing on the album : killer female vocals , she just nails it in every freaking song !
psykometal - 12.11.2011 at 20:13  
Fantastic review. Extremely accurate. I love this band. I love In a Flesh Aquarium and I do love this more, I was worried they wouldn't be able to outdue Flesh Aquarium and oh boy was I wrong, def the best avant garde/progressive album of the year imo. \m/
Edmund Fogg - 12.11.2011 at 20:27  
Yeppe deffinetly a bands that defines Avant-Guarde. I'm so proud of them. I remember when I saw'em live in lots of churches basements. Now they have worldwide recognition and will take part in Hellfest. Good things does happen to great bands
tuerda - 12.11.2011 at 22:00  
One of the best albums from 2011 IMO. It takes MANY listens to disentangle the mess, but it is totally worth it. I have liked it more and more each time through.
Assassiyoun - 12.11.2011 at 22:06  
In a Flesh Aquarium was good but this one sounds to me like total gibberish. I find In a Flesh Aquarium more concise, it is crazy but the crazy parts flow one after another, not everything is played at the same time like on this one. Still, I will try it at least once more just to be sure.
Black_Handed - 13.11.2011 at 00:37  
Not a single mention of the bass? im dissapointed.
Edmund Fogg - 13.11.2011 at 06:25  
Written by Black_Handed on 13.11.2011 at 00:37

Not a single mention of the bass? im dissapointed.


well the mambo/salsa/jazz part might refer to it, but you're right The bassist deserves a paragraph of his own
Unhealer - 13.11.2011 at 15:36  
This might be my album of the year.

I love how they have progressed since their last album. They had this chaotic musical concept correctly described on the review but they couldn't master it until now IMO.
And I like that the album is conceptual, very delirious lyrics all over.

Nice review but you could have covered some other aspects, like the bass as mentioned above or that you forgot there are also clean male vocals occasionally besides the growls.
Unhealer - 13.11.2011 at 15:37  
BTW, I'm in love with leilindel (L)
Paradox0 - 13.11.2011 at 18:25  
Written by Assassiyoun on 12.11.2011 at 22:06

In a Flesh Aquarium was good but this one sounds to me like total gibberish. I find In a Flesh Aquarium more concise, it is crazy but the crazy parts flow one after another, not everything is played at the same time like on this one. Still, I will try it at least once more just to be sure.


this is going to take more than one more listen my friend. I loved Flesh Aquarium. I would even say it was my favorite album at one point but this album took me a whole month of listening to really get what was going on. I finally broke down and just listened to one song a day and nothing else. I assure you this is the most demanding listen I've ever had but the payoff is more than worth it. Many of the different parts tend to be connected by an instrument or two and once you get the hang of the various structures you you realize that everything actually does fit together (even if it is intentionally meant to add some kind of disorientating atmosphere)

As for the review I agree with the comment on the first song. I remember listening to that song and realizing that only 3 minutes had gone bye with what felt like the equivalent of 10-minutes of musical ideas typically found in most music. I'm really impressed though with how surprisingly cohesive and cognitivly the songs are structured.
Assassiyoun - 13.11.2011 at 21:02  
Written by Paradox0 on 13.11.2011 at 18:25


this is going to take more than one more listen my friend. I loved Flesh Aquarium. I would even say it was my favorite album at one point but this album took me a whole month of listening to really get what was going on. I finally broke down and just listened to one song a day and nothing else.


One song a day? I will try that.
R'Vannith - 14.11.2011 at 00:36  
Man this is really good review, I couldn't find the words to describe this album myself. I think this sums it up nicely: "the organized chaos seems to become a shape shifter along the number of listens, creating an elaborate labyrinth of unmatched sonic landscapes."
MétalNoir - 14.11.2011 at 16:33  
Nice review but it pretty much rounds up what can be said about the last two albums. I would have liked to read what makes this album different from IAFA... More modern and proggy, right? That's all?

I personnally LOVE In A Flesh Aquarium, definitely one of the best metal albums ever and probably the most original of all times. But this one somehow failed to catch me, except for two or three tracks. I had hoped this review would have helped me understand why...
Mr. Doctor - 14.11.2011 at 16:51  
Written by MétalNoir on 14.11.2011 at 16:33

I would have liked to read what makes this album different from IAFA... More modern and proggy, right? That's all?


Also less gothic driven and more industrial/pop/electronic influences. Those 4 things together with the general knowledge of what this band sounds like it's enough info imo
MétalNoir - 15.11.2011 at 05:36  
Written by Mr. Doctor on 14.11.2011 at 16:51

Written by MétalNoir on 14.11.2011 at 16:33

I would have liked to read what makes this album different from IAFA... More modern and proggy, right? That's all?


Also less gothic driven and more industrial/pop/electronic influences. Those 4 things together with the general knowledge of what this band sounds like it's enough info imo

Maybe also less brutal and chaotic?
flozn - 26.11.2011 at 21:20  
Written by MétalNoir on 15.11.2011 at 05:36

Maybe also less brutal and chaotic?

definitely not - the whole album sounds more mature and sometimes even more chaotic than their previous releases, but the production is sooo much better, which makes it sound much more brutal than their previous efforts... but also more accessible...
and leilindel's voice has improved sooo much, oh boy does she sound good on this album - e.g. orange vigilantes (starting approx. 2:00) or the intro to my all-time-favorite "unsolved ideas".

Advertise on Metal Storm


Login or register to post here.



Similar topics

Forum Topic Similarity Started
Reviews Unexpect - Fables Of The Sleepless Empire 10 15.02.2013 by Paradox0
Albums Unexpect - Fables Of The Sleepless Empire 9 04.04.2011 by psykometal
Reviews Unexpect - In A Flesh Aquarium 7.5 20.12.2006 by Talvi
Reviews Dark Tranquillity - The Gallery 6 04.02.2010 by
Reviews Into Eternity - The Scattering Of Ashes 6 19.11.2006 by Spyroid



Hits total: 4642 | This month: 47