Intronaut – The Direction of Last Things (Century Media)

Genre: Progressive Metal

Between The Buried And Me may have long since established themselves as the kings of mind warping prog metal, but Intronaut may soon be making a grab for the throne, if their fifth album is anything to go by.

The Direction of Last Things is a cascade of musical textures, a technically astonishing piece of work which you’ll want to delve into again and again. Recorded swiftly with minimal fuss, this opus sounds warm and organic; every musician shines, every bass noodle or hammer-on is gloriously captured… maybe having Devin Townsend behind the mixing desk had something to do with it.

Ultimately though, it’s the quality of Intronaut’s songcraft, the way their rhythms interlock and then burst free, that really impresses here: The Pleasant Surprise, for instance, is a joyous exhibition of contorted, hard-edged  riffs, powered by Danny Walker’s thrilling drumming, the title track, meanwhile, sees Intronaut reach for the stars with just over five minutes of musical alchemy, blending steel and melody seamlessly together.

Less open minded folk might skip the LA quartet’s jazzy excursions, everyone else will praise the gods that there are bands like this around today. A triumph.

RUSHONROCK RATED: 8.5/10 Leading The Way