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Incoming Cerebral Overdrive
(Le Stelle: A Voyage Adrift)
2012
Staff Rating: Crank this to 7.5 of 11
Genre:
Progressive metal, Sludge
Sounds Like:
Cavity, Iron Monkey, Mastodon
Immense, chaotic, grueling and trippy are just a few words that describe the sound of Italy’s Incoming Cerebral Overdrive. If it sounds overwhelming; it sure is, but for the right reasons. Their previous two albums were typically a blend of sludge and speed metal with math rock undertones, very similar to Mastodons' Remission. On their latest offering we now hear some growth and expansion into new territories.  Take the style of the first two albums, tone them down a bit, throw in some progressive metal, psychedelic guitars, sprawling percussion, a bit of synths, expanded vocals and it’s the recipe for Le Stelle: A Voyage Adrift.

You know you’re in for a wild ride on opening track "Mirzam", as it shifts back and forth between progressive metal riffs and an all-out heavy barrage of metal-core. "Sirius" continues the onslaught, as we are introduced to synths being mixed in with the heavy sludge; it’s a very nice touch, it tends to separate them from the crowd. "Betelgeuse" showcases some diversity as the opening is extremely catchy in an alternative way as the vocals start to become more and more varied. "Kochab" has a soothing melody in the beginning than dives back into the chaos and the black metal style vocals toward the end sound as if the singer is being possessed. "Adhara" is so heavy that you feel as if you were just trampled by horses than becoming calm for a few moments, for a song that is only 3:42, it packs quite a punch. By now, you either love the band or can’t stand them, there is no in between.

The next few tracks are massive, dense and unforgiving as the songs blend together so well, there are no gaps. It is sometimes difficult to know where a song ends and a new one begins. Ending the album is the ten minute atmospheric "Rigel", a multi-layered, apocalyptic voyage, would be fitting as the score for the movie "Blade Runner".

ICO have delivered a contender for one of the most overlooked metal albums of 2012 with Le Stelle: A Voyage Adrift. It spans between complication and approachability well, so if you’re bored of metal these days and want something bit different; give Incoming Cerebral Overdrive a listen.

Standout Tracks:
Kochab, Betelgeuse
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