Origin

Entity

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Topeka, Kansas' Origin have received precious little mainstream recognition for a band that's been churning out Grade-A technical death metal for well over a decade; possibly due to their problems retaining a stable lineup, or because their envelope-pushing abilities have simply blown too many minds into helpless jelly along the way. Or maybe ‘cuz there's no God or something. Whatever the true reason, 2011's Entity finds the group poised on the edge of a breakthrough, as their insistently daunting instrumental abilities appear to finally be harnessed into more cohesive songs, which, if they're anything but easy to digest even now, sure require less than endless patience and dedication on the listener's part. Hey, all this stuff is supposed to be f**king entertainment after all, right? And while a license to operate extreme metal machinery is still pretty much mandatory to get behind Origin's wheel, more folks should manage to pass the rigid examinations imposed by altogether brief, borderline math-metal-crazy, but therefore razor-focused cuts like opener "Expulsion of Fury," "Swarm," and even the dissonance-fest "Committed." Meanwhile, longer expositions like "Conceiving Death" and "Evolution of Extinction" allow the band to broaden their dynamic range (inserting slower riffs and passages amid the reigning full-bore intensity) and develop ideas further, even though not a single one of these is ever visibly repeated. And in comparatively epic, particularly memorable efforts like "Saliga" and "Consequence of Solution," Origin respectively tips a hat to Nile's Eastern-flavored melodies before putting on a virtuosic clinic of riveting proportions. All in all, Entity arguably achieves the ultimate convergence between extreme metal's muso element and its basest savage streak thus far in Origin's impressive career; a collision between methodical civility and wanton chaos so shocking, that real life can only try to imitate its artistic manifestation here.

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