Tethra - Empire of the Void (2020)
With two albums and an EP to their catalog since forming in 2008, the Italian quintet of Tethra has made consistently strong impressions, with the quality of their individual performances and overall crafting resulting in great releases.
Now, with their third album, Tethra stride confidently through an hour's worth of their death/doom metal mixture, working overall atmosphere and individual moments to great effect. Generally speaking, the vocals and drums handle the aggression of the death metal side, while the guitar and bass provide the melancholic doom. But there are also times when the vocals slide into deep wells of longing and regret, or the guitar will burst into raging assault, for example. Throughout the album, the band continually experiments and keeps things from growing predictable or stale, which is a needful concern with both sides of their stylistic heritage.
Whether engaging in slow-paced mood studies (like the title track, for example) or cutting loose with high-action expressiveness, Tethra's work on this album shows the group always focused on making their music come to life. The inclusion of a David Bowie cover (“Space Oddity”) is a surprising touch, but the heavy tenderness the band brings to their treatment of it makes for a memorable twist on the original material. On the whole, it's another strong showing from Tethra, and one that sees them continuing to expand their horizons.
For Fans Of; Apothecary, Esogenesi, Illimitable Dolor, Matalobos, Towards Atlantis Lights