I get a lot of press releases and album advances and unfortunately, I can’t review everything that comes across my desk. Do I feel bad when I get multiple requests on an album that I simply don’t have time to review? Of course I do! I’m (sorta) human after all. Do I feel even worse when I get a request or two then have a 30 minute phoner with the former lead singer of Pantera who praises one artist I’ve gotten multiple requests for and THEN decide “Huh, maybe I should give this band another listen?” Yes. Yes I do.
But I digress.
SYK is their name (Pronounced “Ess Why Kay”, not “Sick” says Mr. Anselmo) and marrying Meshuggah riffage with a vocalist who’s like the second coming of Julie Christmas is their game! On I-Optikon, the Italian quartet create the sickest of sounds for the sickest of metalheads.
“I-Optikon” is that Christmas meets Meshuggah marriage that was previously mentioned and starts SYK’s sophomore opus in blistering style. “Sinomi” expands Delila Kayros’ already impressive range bringing in a little Heart (The band AND the adjective) amidst the sonic destruction that is happening underneath. “Disintegrate” has Kayros belt out a range of styles (A croon! Some clean vox! A pixie-like falsetto!) while the djent rumblings of Stefano Ferrian and Gianluca Ferro continue to shred.
Speaking of shredding, that’s exactly what “Fleshworms” does with a lone guitar which builds into a gargantuan groove-laden shoegaze headbanger. Bringing up its’ rear is the frenetic “Fong” with hypnotic riffing racing against Federico De Bernardi Di Valserra’s unbridled percussive attacks. “Absense” is just pure metal bliss complete with a creepy singsong interlude before heading into the epic conclusion of “The White Sun” with Kayros’ cry ringing out over a severe musical pummeling driving towards an abrupt finish.
For Housecore fans, for djent fans, for metal fans, for extreme noise fans: SYK bring the goods and then some on I-Optikon which is out now through the aforementioned Housecore Records. Get yours right here or by clicking the Bandcamp track below.