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Trilateral - 2017 - "Elliptic Orbits"

(50:24; Trilateral)


TRACK LIST:                  

1. Dividers of Infinity 4:18
2. Cloud Forest 6:25
3. Airlock 1:19
4. Celestial Bodies 4:36
5. Whalefall 5:46
6. Fountainhead 4:30
7. Nomad 2:12
8. Blessed Protagonist 4:48
9. Charon 4:18
10. Darkless 5:07
11. Arbitrarium 4:44
12. Convergence 2:21


Graeme Kalb - vocals, guitars
Sam Smit - vocals, bass
Jacob Goose - drums, percussion
Morgan Lander - vocals

Prolusion. Canadian band Trilateral appears to have started out sometime around 2013, with the band releasing their initial EP that year. A few years down the line they released their debut album "Elliptic Orbits", a self released production dating back to the spring of 2017. The band haven't released any new material since then, and the band's Facebook page have been dormant since the end of 2020.

Analysis. Whether this is a band and an album that fits within a specific progressive context will probably be a matter of subjective opinion in this particular case, but for me at least I find this band to be an interesting addition to the progressive metal part of the progressive rock universe. A mainstay element throughout are the gruff and distorted lead vocals, making use of the vocal traditions pioneered by the extreme metal scene and delivered in a suitably dramatic and aggressive manner. With some of the compositions also making effective use of the more hectic and frantic pace and instrument elements typically used by extreme metal bands of different varieties. What makes this production more interesting when regarded from a progressive metal perspective is that this is also a band that are really fond of quirky and off kilter riff and rhythm constellations. We do get some steady riff barrages with the rhythms to match, and some dramatic impulses that may sound subtly familiar to those fond of the djent tradition pops up on a select few occasions too, but more often than not we get songs with more unusual patterns and trajectories being at display. More often than not with a few different instances of them being in use in the individual songs too. Otherwise we get some nifty flowing guitar solo runs being an efficient contrast to the quirkier underpinnings, a little bit of an influx from the alternative side of the metal universe and some sections where the riffs and rhythms are delivered with a bit more of a mathematical precision. Another element worth taking note of is that quite a few of the compositions feature calmer, lighter toned and more elegant interludes or intermissions, at times with a bit of a jazz inspired delivery, and for all of them making use of a clean guitar sound that in some cases sounds like it may be acoustic.

Conclusion. While the landscapes explored by Trilateral may not be universally regarded as being purebred progressive metal, this is an album that is on the more unconventional side of matters for sure. Those who tend to enjoy an extreme metal flavored variety of progressive metal that revolves around quirky, off kilter and somewhat unusual guitar riff and rhythm constellations strikes me as being the main audience for this album, and while I suspect that this may be an album with a little bit more of a niche appeal, personally I do find it to be an interesting and rewarding production. A good album with many solid qualities.

Progmessor: February 2024

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