Simus – Vox Vult11th February 2015
Sticking with our Italiano theme this evening, I’m moving swiftly onto a band from the province of Como, Simus. Their goal to stimulate and engage the listener, as they say on their website:
“From the very beginning one of the main features of the band was to associate their music with other types of artistic expression in order to fully involve the listener-viewer.
The songs of the band – difficult to be classified in one sole genre of music, moving among rock, prog and metal, cross different sound worlds in order to create a continuous flow of heterogeneous emotional states”.
The intro bubbles, literally, while an ancient chant drones through the opener, in a hypnotic way. An electronic tribal uttering in “Giano,” which is then catapulted skyward with “Vox Vult”. Hammer-blow riffs and drums, that are mega-heavyweight ,encircle you, whilst caustic vocals scream expressively. It’s like a fight between the two elements, the vocals trying to shout down the riffs and vice-versa, an attention grabbing, killer opener to an album.
“Planet Calak” has guitar harmonics used effectively and and prominent bassline which is basic and effective and it’s well worth a listen. The tone of the guitars as well, my god, it’s meatier than a fully grown cow, the stuff just detonates!! Oh and another thing, the solos are fast, furious and melodic, worth salivating over!!
“Mantis” sets about carrying on with the audible assault, but with a little more Itallianissimo in the vocals, nice to see some of the mother tongue on a record too. Then there is the mystery that is the song “Who Am I”, a song, best placed perhaps at the start of a murder mystery series on ITV!! Yes, you heard me, weird, no?
Back to the good stuff with “The Soulmaker”, this is characterised by abrasive vocals and hugely changeable riffs throughout. Also, the song just has bags of energy, with intermittent shotgun blasts on the drums, that are jaw-dropping.
What comes next, is the mark of well composed albums, the “take-it-down-a-notch” song. Melody, emotion and clarity are delivered by all instruments/vocals in “Bitter Taste”. The song is a beautiful song, a good leveller on an album that often feels like having an anvil dropped on your head, in a good way of course!!
“Fakir” exhibits some awesome layers of sound. Some effect-laden vocals and guitars mix together to create something hypnotic and equally tribal as the album opener. Song structure, as you know it is out of the window on this one guys… as they said they like to keep you, listener guessing. They do that… and more!
I love the band, for their no-nonsense approach to riff making and bassline crafting. I admire the simplicity of writing a chunky, catchy riff and then placing it in a fragmented song structure, giving the chaos absolute meaning. For this feeling, “Deus Vult” is your case in point.
In the dying embers of the album, you find an overtly tribal “Requiem For My Moon”, which opts for some tribal percussion and light vocals, which are transformed into a Prog Metal song, eventually!! Yep, that happens!, strange but true!
……..aaaaaand finally that laser beam phaser sound of “The Golden Pendulum Of Babylon” means it’s the end of an enthralling album. Harshly distorted thrash-wah beckons in some almighty riffs and ghostly chants.
Simus, remember the name; creative, unique, heavy and tribal. They pack a punch with their heady and evocative brand of Prog Metal.
Score: 9 out of 10
2. Vox Vult
3. Planet Caiak
5. Who am I ?
6. The Soulmaker
7. Bitter Taste
9. Deus Vult
10. Requiem For My Moon
11. The Golden Pendulum Of Babylon
Album: Vox Vult
Record Label: Bakerteam Records
Release Date: January 19th 2015
Band Website: http://www.simusband.com/main/rec.jsp
For Fans Of: Prog Metal, Italiano