When it comes to bands being messed around by record labels, Self Imposed Exile (SIE) must be up there for small bands. Being signed has seemingly cost them two years of their musical career, but now, they’re back on their feet, flying the flag for independent artists with their debut EP ‘Mountainside’.
What the listener gets here is a band delivering some really good progressive blackened death metal that really does what it says on the tin. This is an EP which doesn’t need any frills or gimmicks to get its point across as it demonstrates a hard working band getting their name out there. Tracks such as ‘Calling of the Haunted’, ‘Breaking of the Circle’ and ‘Fire Cleansed’ show SIE having all the power and impact of Old Mans Child, Opeth and even Mayhem whilst the additional keyboards allowing something more atmospheric to shrine though being able to bring in fans of Septicflesh and Therion.
Naturally, there isn’t anything here that the listener will not have heard before and the final track ‘Necessary Regression’ feels a little forced and wouldn’t be missed had it not been there but with ‘Mountainside’, SIE have built themselves a nice little foundation and it’ll be interesting to see how the band grow from here.
"a nice foundation to grow from"
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