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The Reticent: Le Temps De Detruit Tout
I’ll be honest when I say that I don’t know much about The Reticent other than what was provided to me from the label and Clawhammer PR. Signed to Heaven and Hell Records, Le Temps De Detruit Tout is apparently the follow-up to their 2008 release Amor Mortem Mei Erit. I wanted to sit down and do a quick first impression, but I couldn’t find out exactly what I was listening to at first. But, after a little time, it became clear that I was tring to overanalyze The Reticent, and who they were was blatantly obvious.

“Nihil” starts off with a spoken word segment that seems as though it comes from an eighties Science Fiction film with some synths behind it that grow louder, then fade into some simple acoustic chords meant to establish an atmosphere similar to Opeth. However, “In Pursuit of Redemption” decides to take a different path entirely. After a slow fade in, we’re greeted with what sounds like a live unplugged performance of Tool meshed with the aforementioned act. The slower pace and some echoing distortions on the vocals in the background help to create a somber tone, and the guitars are honestly not that bad. The main problem is that this has been done to death already, and there’s really nothing new or inspiring about it for the whole nearly six and a half minutes. The clean singing is well executed, but the whole time I felt like I was listening to a carbon copy of Watershed by Opeth, even around the two minute fifty seconds mark where everything stops and the chords are simply a few notes strung along, one to each word of the lyrics, creating a very empty space against the singing before crashing in with some heavier electric riffs and richer drums for a little while.

“Mutually Assured Destruction” thoroughly tricked me, and easily will confuse the listener too. At the start, it seems as if “In Pursuit of Redemption” was a continued introduction thanks to the Depressive Black Metal style start this one has. Unfortunately, it quickly drops that for the same kind of Progressive Rock acoustic mentality of before. There seems to be a little more passion in the vocals this time around, and when the music kicks in with a little extra richness and energy, it sounds good and really sticks to a true Progressive build to the flow, something the last track greatly lacked. The transitions are a lot better too despite a few sudden drops in pace, but overall I was far more impressed with this song than the previous two, not walking away feeling like I literally just wasted my time.

“Enemy” takes things into a Tool meets A Perfect Circle kind of atmosphere. The enthusiastic shouting during the chorus sounds great, but that entire segment and many other passages, along with how the song builds, really gives the influences away. The guitar solo here isn’t anything too spectacular either, really feeding into the slower pace with a “technical” sense from single notes of a background guitar during it that do expand a bit towards the end. The song itself is a lot lighter, and definitely feels suited more towards being radio friendly, but the simple snare-driven drum solo around the five minute mark that leads into more eighties style music through a hint of funk in the guitar chords with a groovey Bass performance really comes out of nowhere, but feels natural and unique to the song, as well as the band itself. However, the entire experience is well worth it in the end, and makes for an enjoyable eight minute plus song.

“Lie to Me” is a shorter song compared to the others, and another acoustic performance. This seems to be the simplest of them all, but at the same time you genuinely feel the passion in both the music and the vocals. This is more along the lines of how “In Pursuit of Redemption” should have been handled. There are altered background vocals here and there, but they fit the atmosphere well. The chorus will easily have you singing along, and the mixture of softer chords that bring an aura of sadness with them laced with nice transitions into the louder, richer chorus work nicely. The guitar solo is short and sweet, but never going out of character, nor does it alter the flow. This is easily the most impressive and enjoyable song off of this album thusfar.

I’m ending my time with this album on “Silence,” which is blowing me away. While not the most impressive Progressive Metal offering you will find, it stands out well thanks to how it breaks from the norm of the others. Clearly another Opeth inspired recording, the audio quality finally gets to shine at its strongest here. The music is genuinely heavy, and the energy is captured nicely from start to finish. Some of the shifts can be a bit jerky, but for the most part feel natural to what comes off as a true expression of the composer(s). The upbeat sense of the song finds plenty of double bass kicks to amp up the speed a bit and give it a rhythm you can heavy move your head along to when you let it sweep you away. The chorus feels really emotional for it’s tamer clean singing, but the layered vocals really help the atmosphere out. The closing brings things down a bit, throwing in a Doom Metal sound before what comes off as a breakdown with some gutturals, turning an impressive song into a questionable one for a short time. While not bad to have considering it’s Progressive Metal roots, it largely just becomes jarring to the flow without really forced into existence.

Had I walked away at the song “Enemy,” I would have chocked this up to nothing more than a poor carbon copy of Opeth, Tool and even A Perfect Circle, and in one instance a complete waste of my time. However, at this point, it seems the further I get into Le Temps De Detruit Tout, the stronger the music becomes. While definitely far from an original effort, it slowly becomes a very strong one that pays homage to it’s obvious influences better with each track that passes. While I really have no urge to go back and listen to it again, simply because I’ve heard it all before and if I wanted to listen to Tool or Opeth I’d go listen to Tool or Opeth. But, for fans of this kind of music that just can’t get enough of it, I definitely would suggest checking it out at this point.

Article based on digital review material provided by Heaven and Hell Records.