I actually found Digression Assassions via Instagram when guitarist/vocalist David Catala Backman followed me. I always check out the people that follow me and I saw that he was in a band. More importantly, I noticed he had a really beautiful cat! I am a cat lover so I had to check out his band. Anyone with a cat that cool looking deserved a listen!
Digression Assassins definitely assassinate the listener’s interest in digression, as they always hold your attention. But thankfully, the band are always digression from one thing to the next. “Merkaba” is a jigsaw puzzle with each song being a very unique piece that fits perfectly with the rest. But each song is its own jigsaw puzzle which has sections within it that sometimes strangely fit together. Confused?
Digression Assassins are a prog metal band in the truest definition. They are a mathematician’s dream too. Each song has sections that can either transition politely, like on the epic opening track “The Traveller,” which has basically three parts to it. But even then the band are willing to jump from a standard verse to an odd chorus which gets the listener’s attention.
“Canopus” has some great riffs and time signatures. It even has a very Pink Floyd like moment in the middle! “Eclipse” is the shortest track and reminds me a bit of Converge. The band are in full attack mode to start off before yielding to a melodic moment and then it’s back to the insanity.
“Cast of a Minimum Life” seems like it is going to be a friendly metal song until the 2 minute mark when it flies off the rails. I love destroying a solo with a whammy bar. “She Married Madness” is heavy on the madness. “Earth is Dead” is the one truly slower track and it’s a nice combo of post rock and even doom. Of course mid way thru it does some very odd shit just to make sure you are paying attention!
Overall, I love that each guitarist doing their own thing, one in each ear. “Merkaba” is definitely a headphone album. Vocalist David Catala Backman can basically do anything with his voice from a whisper to a scream. He varies his delivery perfectly with each section of each song. Kudos to drummer Andres Breuer Torres who must have majored in mathematics!
The production and mix by Tom van Heesch are perfect. The album has the right amount of punch it needs. The artwork for “Merkaba” is perfect as well. Digression Assassins are another GREAT Swedish prog metal band but one that does things in their own unique way. Here’s to Digression Assassins, long may they digress!
1. The Traveller
4. Cast for a Minimum Life
5. She Married Madness
6. Earth is Dead