“A Tunnel to Eden” by Philly’s Alustrium is 73 minutes of the most blistering technical death metal I personally have ever heard. It has so many riffs, notes and blast beats jammed into it that you wonder if these guys are human. Add on that the lyrics are very intelligent and thought proving, Alustrium are certainly a force to be reckoned with.
The album is worth it alone for the last 4 tracks which include “Lucid Intervals” which acts like the eye of this metallic hurricane of an album. The song shows off the ability of the band to reign in their tremendous power and pump the brakes enough to let the listener recover from the first part of the album. What follows it is a trilogy of songs called “The Illusion of Choice” which make this album an must have.
The band bust everything out on the three movements of “The Illusion of Choice” including many slower and very melodic solos and even some clean backing vocals on “Eros” which actually add to the overall majestic feel of that part of the trilogy. These songs are so fucking good that they underscore what the band probably should have done on tracks like “The Atheist Phenomenon” and “In His Own Image.”
Those songs basically maintain a breakneck pace that luckily is quelled by the 47 second interlude “Wander.” Dynamics would have made these earlier tracks even heavier and more compelling like the ending trilogy. Even the opening title track has a beautiful and powerful ending to it which offsets the overall heaviness of the track. The intro to “Slackjaw” is a beautiful acoustic guitar piece that yields to some sledgehammer riffing. But by the time Alustrium get to “My Possessor,” they have expanded their tech death metal to be very progressive and complex.
There’s a lot to take in on “A Tunnel to Eden” which is quite amazing. Alustrium have a tremendous amount of technical ability but as the ending trilogy shows, they also can write a masterpiece when they try to do so. “A Tunnel to Eden” is not just something fans of tech death metal should buy, it really is something required if you are a fan of that genre or if you are a prog metalhead who leans toward bands like Allegaeon, Cattle Decapitation, or Beyond Creation. Though “A Tunnel to Eden” isn’t for the faint of heart, if you give Alustrium the chance, they will impress you for sure.
1. A Tunnel To Eden
2. The Atheist Phenomenon
3. In His Own Image
6. Procreate Eviscerate
7. My Possessor
8. Lucid Intervals
9. The Illusion Of Choice I: Genesis
10. The Illusion Of Choice II: Eros
11. The Illusion Of Choice III: Thanatos