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Album Review: Carpathian - 'Isolation'

20 August 2008 | 11:26 am | Staff Writer
Originally Appeared In

Local hardcore release of ’08…

More Carpathian More Carpathian

If you want to see something amusing

go and check out Carpathian’s MySpace page (you’ll find the

link above). Amongst the many thousands of comments from the band’s

hordes of fans, you’ll find a few short and sharp blasts of verbal

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abuse. They usually look a little something like… 

“You guys are shit coz you

don’t have breakdowns anymore”. 

Now, that brief snippet of literary

genius does contain one solid fact… and it sure as hell isn’t the

misguided opinion that Carpathian are shit. In fact, Isolation

is one of the most well written, free flowing and powerful hardcore

releases of 2008, both here and abroad.  

Within thirty-seconds of pressing

the play button it’s obvious that the current Carpathian line-up

is an entirely different beast than the one we’ve become accustomed

to. Last year’s seven-inch only release (Wrecked) only hinted at what

the band was capable of, as the dense and grooving riffs of the album’s

title track make for a compelling listen. Continuing in a similar fashion

is “Cursed”, David’s driving single-kick drumming combining with Marty’s newfound vocal delivery to deliver one of the record’s

strongest tracks. 

“Spirals” is a straight to

the point blast of punk rock, the drum and bass driven breakdown (note,

breakdown does not equal mosh part kids) providing the perfect gateway

for the gang vocals of the song’s bridge section, while “Insomnia”

shows that Carpathian can still write a catchy tune without having

dumb down the musical or lyrical content of their material.  

The chords that that punctuate

“The Cold Front” and “Deadbeats” wouldn’t be out of place

on a CultOfLuna record, yet somehow the Melbourne

five-piece have been able to convert the usually lengthy style of guitar-work

into three-minute doses of heavy hitting hardcore. “Sun Heights”

contains one of the riffs of the year, the vocal chant of, “On my

own against the world, and I never felt so fucking cold”, ringing

loud and proud over the heavily melodic passage. The memorable lyrics

and engaging guitar work of “Seventyk” has made it a standout on

a record where you’ll struggle to find a weak track, while the revamped

“Ceremony” sits perfectly amongst the Isolation track listing, leaving

the mid-paced “Permanent” to finish us off. 

Much has been made of Carpathian’s

musical transformation, but when a band spends as much time on the road

as these kids, your tastes, influences and attitudes are bound to change.

At the end of the day, they’ve created a fantastic record, one that

deserves the full attention of heavy music across the world. 

  1. Isolation
  2. Cursed
  3. Spirals
  4. Insomnia
  5. The Cold Front
  6. Deadbeats…
  7. Sun Heights
  8. Seventyk
  9. Ceremony
  10. Permanent