Geryon - s/t

When I first read about Geryon, the new duo comprised of Lev Weinstein (drums) and Nicholas McMaster (bass & vocals) of avant-garde black metallers Krallice, I was of two minds. On the one hand, I get excited any time I hear about new music from anyone associated with Krallice. However, I’ve never sat and thought to myself: You know what would make Krallice even more awesome? If they got rid of their guitar players. In fact, for me it’s the interplay between the guitars of Messrs. Barr and Marston that makes Krallice so compelling. So what on earth would their rhythm section sound like on their own? I figured the worst case scenario would be that they’d just sound like Krallice without guitars, and maybe best case would see them doing the same kind of sludgy funeral doom as Bell Witch. Fortunately, I was wrong on both counts.

Geryon play a brand of technical/avant-garde death metal that reminds me an awful lot of Obscura-era Gorguts, which is kind of ironic considering that the aforementioned Colin Marston has been playing bass as part of Luc Lemay’s revamped Gorguts lineup since 2009. Odd coincidences aside, the band’s recently released self-titled EP is a breathtaking slab of angular, dissonant bass riffs and furiously polyrhythmic drumming that really needs to be heard to be believed. The single biggest compliment I can probably pay the band is that at no point do I wish there were guitars. Unlike Bell Witch, who play a style of music characterized by severely downtuned instruments and bass lines that tend to mimic the main guitar parts, the style of tech-death played by Geryon tends to be dominated by guitars, or at least by the rhythm/counter rhythm of multiple stringed instruments. There really is just a single bass part carrying these songs, as this live video will attest:

You can stream or purchase Geryon’s self-titled EP from their Bandcamp page. If vinyl is more your thing, head over to Gilead Media. Either way, this is a release you don’t want to miss.