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Wizardthrone - Hypercube Necrodimensions review




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Reviewer:
5.0

48 users:
7.46
Band: Wizardthrone
Album: Hypercube Necrodimensions
Release date: July 2021


01. Black Hole Quantum Thermodynamics
02. Frozen Winds Of Thyraxia
03. Incantation Of The Red Order
04. Forbidden Equations Deep Within The Epimethean Wasteland
05. The Coalescence Of Nine Stars In The System Once Known As Markarian-231
06. Of Tesseractual Gateways And The Grand Duplicity Of Xhul
07. Hypercube Necrodimensions
08. Beyond The Wizardthrone (Cryptopharmalogical Revelations Of The Riemann Zeta Function)


Pop quiz! Final studio day. Turns out "technical blackened death symphonic power metal" is too long for ID3 tags, after all. Do you... (Χ) scream "less is more!" and get fired? (Ξ) growl "who cares about genres?" and get lynched? (Σ) scream "wizard!", growl "metal!", then speed dial Napalm Records?

Having raced the light for long enough to overtake a years' worth of photons, I decelerated, grabbed beers and a folding chair, and sat down by the starboard window. In light rays from bygone times catching up with me, I get ready to document the Hypercube Necrodimensions studio sessions, but a damn space cat is blocking half of my sensor array and I can only see the exterior of the building. Finally, Aleksi Munter (Swallow The Sun, Insomnium) and Evan Berry (Wilderun) step outside to pay a pizza delivery guy in Alestorm and Nekrogoblikon merch. Great, I travelled halfway to Alpha Centauri to find out who are behind pseudonyms like "V. Morbistopheles Jones" and learn nothing more than Wizardthrone being a supergroup of sorts.

In real life, the closest we get to actual magic would be science. Get data, make models, and in some sense, bend reality to your will. Are your kids bored by physics? Frame those dusty equations in stories about Qthulhu (quantum Cthulhu, silly) and his hordes of dimension devourers and relativistic reavers. Would they rather play ball than do math? Spin a tale about the Riemann Zeta function's inexplicably ineffable powers over the mega-ultra-multiverse, then run away from any follow-up questions. Statements like "over the top" are quite useless in hyperbolic geometry, and Wizardthrone are, if Martin Walkyier (Skyclad) doesn't mind me quoting his lyrics, "more tongue in cheek than a French kiss from Judas Iscariot".

At a glance, Hypercube Necrodimensions could pass for blackened death metal, but Napalm Records' new wizard metal flavour quickly turns out to be tried-and-true symphonic power metal with extreme and technical toppings then deep-fried in Lovecraftian sci-fi and served on keyboards and guitars with oodles of noodles. Solos abound, and duos even more so, as torrents of keys and strings, sometimes only one at a time, sweep the scales clean in hyperlapse without adding to (nor, unlike the spoken word sections, detracting from) the actual music. Okay, musicians can play and vocalists can talk, I kind of expected that, but can they write some good tunes?

Sure they can, but from the so-dumb-it's-clever nature of Wizardthrone's lyrical themes, I was expecting more creativity. Name the opener track after the holy grail of theoretical physics to lure in (one) unassuming reviewer(s). Drop a mashup of Children Of Bodom choruses into a Wintersun soundscape to make the enjoyable "Frozen Winds Of Thyraxia". Add bombastic counterpoints and orchestral breaks to the early-00's keyboards, and you've got two or three more songs. Replace the chorus with a Skyclad one framed in a start-stop death metal chug to switch up the rhythms for the first time in 20 minutes and make (uh oh, we've got a long one) "The Coalescence Of Nine Stars In The System Once Known As Markarian-231" a rememberable song I'm likely just one listen away from getting stuck in my head. Nope, it already has.

More than halfway through Hypercube Necrodimensions, "Of Tesseractual Gateways And The Grand Duplicity Of Xhul" offers two more album firsts: a change of tempo from semi-breakneck pace to death/doom played hurriedly, and a well-needed breather from (literally) everything with a subdued atmospheric section driven by toms and an elegantly simple piano hook that grows into a switcheroo of blast beats and mid-pace doom. Had this song been the template for the album, I might've even liked it a lot.

So, having proven their song writing skills, the 13 minute closer track should be a good one, right? A good scrapbooking of all the other songs, sure, but the thing is I already heard those songs. I already heard this album in my teens. Music doesn't need to be original, as long as it is played well, and 15 years ago I might've liked this, had I not already been listening to a bunch of way more memorable spins on wizard metal.


Rating breakdown
Performance: 8
Songwriting: 4
Originality: 3
Production: 7





Written on 17.07.2021 by Slam an axe into your boat, then row for your life.


Comments

Comments: 20   Visited by: 120 users
17.07.2021 - 10:38
RaduP
CertifiedHipster
It's the Σ male option
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Do you think if the heart keeps on shrinking
One day there will be no heart at all?


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17.07.2021 - 10:51
Netzach
Planewalker
Written by RaduP on 17.07.2021 at 10:38

It's the Σ male option

To nobody's surprise, I will need you to educate me on common knowledge again.
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17.07.2021 - 10:55
RaduP
CertifiedHipster
Written by Netzach on 17.07.2021 at 10:51

To nobody's surprise, I will need you to educate me on common knowledge again.

Just search "Sigma male" on YouTube and have your day ruined.
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Do you think if the heart keeps on shrinking
One day there will be no heart at all?


2021 goodies
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17.07.2021 - 11:15
Netzach
Planewalker
Written by RaduP on 17.07.2021 at 10:55

Just search "Sigma male" on YouTube and have your day ruined.

Let me guess. Alpha attracts with power, beta attracts with second best for alpha rejects, I think there was omega too and they're incels and such so what's left. A dude rejecting the hierarchy who sits around, activates "Aura: Smarty Edgy Guy" and waits for girls to chat him up?

Also, this is the lowest rating I've ever used. They should've made warlock metal instead, way more badass than wizard in D&D.
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17.07.2021 - 11:20
RaduP
CertifiedHipster
Written by Netzach on 17.07.2021 at 11:15

Let me guess. Alpha attracts with power, beta attracts with second best for alpha rejects, I think there was omega too and they're incels and such so what's left. A dude rejecting the hierarchy who sits around, activates "Aura: Smarty Edgy Guy" and waits for girls to chat him up?

Sigma males are on that grindset and don't care about female attention. Or at least they like to think they don't care mostly because they wouldn't get it anyway.

Back on topic, it sounds like a fun album even if I assumed it would be something a bit different. But I hope it's at least as fun as reading this review was.
----
Do you think if the heart keeps on shrinking
One day there will be no heart at all?


2021 goodies
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17.07.2021 - 12:06
musclassia

Written by RaduP on 17.07.2021 at 11:20


Back on topic, it sounds like a fun album even if I assumed it would be something a bit different. But I hope it's at least as fun as reading this review was.


Can't guarantee that, as the review sets a high fun bar to match, but I did find this album enjoyable, although when everything is turned up to 11 like this, it does introduce some of the issues Netzach raised
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17.07.2021 - 12:23
nikarg
Mod
The review is better than the album, no doubt.
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17.07.2021 - 12:52
Troy Killjoy
perfunctionist
Speaking of over the top...

You were far kinder and definitely more entertaining here than I would have been. I appreciate a good passion project as much as anyone, but this is just offensive to my ears.
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"Wise men talk because they have something to say; fools because they have to say something."
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17.07.2021 - 13:35
Netzach
Planewalker
Written by RaduP on 17.07.2021 at 11:20
Back on topic, it sounds like a fun album even if I assumed it would be something a bit different. But I hope it's at least as fun as reading this review was.

I sure hope you don't find it as fun as my review, it'd turn your compliment into an insult.

Written by musclassia on 17.07.2021 at 12:06
Can't guarantee that, as the review sets a high fun bar to match, but I did find this album enjoyable, although when everything is turned up to 11 like this, it does introduce some of the issues Netzach raised

Writing the review was fun, because there's lots to make fun of. I love storytelling, and (at least my) reviews are more or less stories about albums, so the fun I had writing the article might've ended up giving an unintendedly positive impression.

Written by nikarg on 17.07.2021 at 12:23
The review is better than the album, no doubt.

Yeah, otherwise it'd look like high time for a psychological evaluation.

Written by Troy Killjoy on 17.07.2021 at 12:52
You were far kinder and definitely more entertaining here than I would have been. I appreciate a good passion project as much as anyone, but this is just offensive to my ears.

I decided to edit the rating, as the .5 bonus points for subject matters I am passionate about do not apply to albums luring me with a song title and then turns theoretical physics and pure mathematics into a Thesaurus for gibberish. I also listened to the first track once more after publishing, and... nope, enough wizard metal for me.
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17.07.2021 - 16:35
Mehrad

I liked their single, but reading this review and seeing the general reception, I don't think I will like the album at all. Maybe it's good in small doses.
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Ride a horse that's cleaving through the air and space of dreams.
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17.07.2021 - 18:04
doez
Hallucigenia
I was pretty excited when I heard some guys from gloryhammer were going bal sagoth mode, the first single kinda worried me and this review only confirmed these worries

But I'll listen to it anyways and hurt my ears, that's my Sigma grindset in action
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17.07.2021 - 18:26
BitterCOld
The Ancient One
Added to my 2021 metal to test drive list... then stumbled on to the review before listening. Absolutely fantastic review, i laughed, i cried, I loved it more than Cats... and now concerned I'll find the album less than half as thrilling while taking 5x longer to consume.
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get the fuck off my lawn.

Beer Bug Virus Spotify Playlist crafted by Nikarg and I. Feel free to tune in and add some pertinent metal tunes!
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17.07.2021 - 23:19
Netzach
Planewalker
Written by Mehrad on 17.07.2021 at 16:35

I liked their single, but reading this review and seeing the general reception, I don't think I will like the album at all. Maybe it's good in small doses.

Single was "Thyraxia", no? It's a decent song, on par for the style, problem is nearly the entire album sounds just like it, only less inspired. I do recommend "Of Tesseractual..." though, I will replay that one once in a while, I think. I did my best to find what's good here, but it's just "too much of too much of the same" which regardless of genre, to me, is simply not good music.

Written by doez on 17.07.2021 at 18:04

I was pretty excited when I heard some guys from gloryhammer were going bal sagoth mode, the first single kinda worried me and this review only confirmed these worries

But I'll listen to it anyways and hurt my ears, that's my Sigma grindset in action

I haven't listened to either of those bands, tbh. I barely ever played any metal quite like this even back in the 100% metal teen angst days (lots and lots of power and symphonic,, but this stuff suffocates me). Want to unlearn the word "grindset" now, umm, but also make jokes about the 5σ-set's unmatched chance of success, can't decide. Where's that Lvl 3 Clairvoyance scroll when I need it...

Written by BitterCOld on 17.07.2021 at 18:26

Added to my 2021 metal to test drive list... then stumbled on to the review before listening. Absolutely fantastic review, i laughed, i cried, I loved it more than Cats... and now concerned I'll find the album less than half as thrilling while taking 5x longer to consume.

Oh, thanks, cool to see you're having as much fun reading it as I had writing it. I'd been thinking "when will I get myself stuck reviewing the first truly unlikable album?" but turned out to be quite a - (imagining listening to heaps and heaps of just shitty metal for years to come) - uh, nothing to see here, move along.

There definitely was some decent marketing behind this album, I can imagine those press statements catering well to whoever fills their days with literally-all-and-then-some. I'm sort of excited to see how they'll possibly top beyond over this top as for subject matter on a sequel, but now - (mental image: Ganymedalf eats frozen Enceladas, lolz) - yeah, pretty sure this brained my damage.
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22.07.2021 - 00:12
Sand

Damn, you killed them so skillfully x) They probably deserved it
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Non serviam
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22.07.2021 - 00:38
Chidder

I think the album is great! I can clearly hear that they all have fun writing this stuff. Yeah, it's over-the-top as hell, yeah, it's sometimes cheese as f*ck, but hell: "Thyraxia" have amazing guitar work (it reminds me old In Flames stuff), the keyboards in "Forbidden Equations" are mind-boggling, the choruses indeed sounds like COB stuff, and I love the choirs in the grand finale. It's Wintersun but without broom in the ass. And If someone wants to try it out - DON"T listen to this stuff on YouTube! It's ridiculous how YT cuts the audio quality...
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10.08.2021 - 16:56
metalbrat

I did not listen to the album and now I am not sure even if I listen how it can overtake this review. Your review is too good, I shouldn't have read this beforehand. Damn...
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In the beginning I was made of clay. Then I bit the apple and they changed me to metal 🤘
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10.08.2021 - 17:17
Netzach
Planewalker
Written by metalbrat on 10.08.2021 at 16:56

I did not listen to the album and now I am not sure even if I listen how it can overtake this review. Your review is too good, I shouldn't have read this beforehand. Damn...

Oops, sorry about that Thanks man
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10.08.2021 - 19:15
metalbrat

Written by Netzach on 10.08.2021 at 17:17

Written by metalbrat on 10.08.2021 at 16:56

I did not listen to the album and now I am not sure even if I listen how it can overtake this review. Your review is too good, I shouldn't have read this beforehand. Damn...

Oops, sorry about that Thanks man

Looking forward for more reviews from you. Loved your style..
----
In the beginning I was made of clay. Then I bit the apple and they changed me to metal 🤘
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01.09.2021 - 16:42
Baz Anderson

Just listening through this now... it sounds like a cross between Bal-Sagoth and Wintersun, which would be fantastic if the music actually had some depth to it. The song titles and all - it feels a bit too much like theft from Bal-Sagoth really (especially track 4).
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01.09.2021 - 17:12
Netzach
Planewalker
Written by Baz Anderson on 01.09.2021 at 16:42

Just listening through this now... it sounds like a cross between Bal-Sagoth and Wintersun, which would be fantastic if the music actually had some depth to it. The song titles and all - it feels a bit too much like theft from Bal-Sagoth really.

Yeah. If we're retronyming those two as "wizard metal" (and, I mean, why not?), that's precisely what I think too. Been there, done better. This is like a cake entirely made of icing...
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