By: Raymond Westland
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Released on May 26, 2015 via RareNoiseRecords
With his main band Porcupine Tree on indefinite hiatus bassist Colin Edwin likes to keep himself occupied with numerous collaborations and side projects, including Obake and Metallic Taste Of Blood to only name a few. He released Mutations with the aforementioned Obake last year, only to return with a brand new Metallic Taste Of Blood record, sinisterly entitled Doctoring The Dead.
With the previous album being a complete musical mindfuck Colin Edwin and his partners in crime guitarist Eraldo Bernocchi and former Swans/Godflesh drummer Ted Parsons decided to go for a more leaner and structured approach this time around. With the absence of keyboardist Jamie Saft the freestyle jazz influences are all but gone. This is regrettable, however it does make Doctoring The Dead a whole lot more accessible.
Having said that, there’s still plenty of musical going on, especially on ‘Ipssisimus’, ‘Synthetic Tongue’ and ‘Blind Voyeur’. It’s simply mind boggling how elements from new wave, industrial, ambient, doom metal and post-metal are fused together in something that only can described as unique and hauntingly beautiful, albeit delivered with a very ragged avant-garde edge.
Doctoring The Dead has also a very cinematic side to it, in very much the same vein as Russian Circles, Pelican and Red Sparowes. This is where newcomer Roy Powell gets his chance to shine, especially on ‘Day Of The Bones’ and ‘Murder Burger’. His playing style isn’t as abrasive as Jamie Saft’s. He rather complements and enhances the overall ambient feel and atmosphere than to embark on some crazy freestyle jazz musical rampage. In short, his presence fits Doctoring The Dead like the proverbial glove.
It’s clear that the band has moved on to greener pastures on Doctoring The Dead. Whereas on the previous Metallic Taste Of Blood album it was all about living it up, it’s on this record where Colin Edwin and co are really coming into their own. Simply stunning!