Town Portal’s third album Of Violence blends many different styles together ranging from prog inspired metal riffs to math-rock unpredictability, smoothly creating a quite unique sound and almost an entirely new genre within the nine track expanse of this album.
With its obvious nod towards bands such as Meshuggah and Mastodon, Of Violence manages to captures the essence of a progressive metal album and subtly intertwines them with cinematic brass sections that give the album a melodic but gritty sound. Clean bass lines resonate throughout almost the entire album with the notable exception of ‘Roko’s Basilisk’ which has much more in common with a traditional post-metal sound, combining Mastodon-esque fuzzed out riffs perfectly with interlaced melodic sections. Interestingly for an instrumental band, whilst listening to these tracks it’s very easy to imagine where the vocals would sit, such is the melodic nature of the music.
In 2017 the band were recruited by composer Ola Strandh (Massive Entertainment, Ubisoft) to collaborate on the soundtrack to the forthcoming high profile video game Tom Clancy’s The Division 2 and since then the band have continued to move away from their comfort zones and create increasingly experimental and progressive music. Of Violence as a whole leaves a lot for interpretation with it’s broad range of styles, allowing the listener to appreciate the music in a multitude of ways. It isn’t necessary for the listener to be a metal or math-rock fan to fully realise the creativity and musicianship which has gone into this album. Indeed one of the many strengths of this album is that it will have a much wider and far reaching appeal outside the confines of genre.
Of Violence is out now via Art As Catharsis and can be purchased here.
Words: Oli Hulett