Formed in 1999, Swiss band BEANSIDHE has delivered their debut album, Mónt. The extreme metal band have roots from nearly every corner in metal, most firmly in death metal with strong elements of black and thrash. Will such a long wait for a first full-length album from the band show off exactly what BEANSIDHE have to offer?
Kicking off the album is instrumental title track Mónt, the track itself is just under one minute long and is a very brief and quick glimpse of the bands black metal side. Unfortunately as it leads into Spazi, the intro track proves little to no purpose being placed on the album as the two are extremely different. Spazi tears away from the black metal vibe that Mónt delivered, exposing listeners to a more melodic death metal element, and as such a short intro track, it seemed very displaced and disconnected from where the album was going to head.
As Spazi kicks in however, there is a definite vibe that can be related to bands such as AMON AMARTH and early IN FLAMES where speed is not always necessary but way each element of the track is pieced together is the most important. Whilst the track in itself however oozes with excellence with an excellent sound and a noticeable tinge to it that will make you recognise it is indeed a BEANSIDHE track, it also can appear to be very long winded at just over seven minutes with very little change throughout. One of the most noticeable things with Spazi on the other hand is that whilst it can be perceived as a melodic death metal track, it has interesting specks of influences from classic rock and metal when left to a very chord-progressive outro.
Mòrt certainly picks up behind Spazi with a slight bit more speed thrown into the mix. It definitely displays more of the thrash elements that influence the sound of BEANSIDHE’s music, it may not have the gut-punching speed that thrash can often have but it has the straight up, attitude-driven riffs. Despite being able to notice elements of different sub-genres in metal, the Swiss band manage to keep their overall sound pretty similar, making them very distinguishable.
Féras once again displays many different extractions of sub-genres, black metal and death metal being the most prominent. In some places by this point in the album, it feels as though the music has just become slightly comfortable, not necessarily a bad thing but for a debut album, the punch doesn’t stick around and for that to fall away when it’s needed most is an awful shame. The same can be said for penultimate track, Febraar.
When it comes to the closure of the album, Diàvól rolls in as the longest track on Mónt at over 10-minutes. It is very well pieced together with certain things being introduced sound-wise such as synths and orchestrated elegance, but for the closure of the album, it doesn’t feel as though it leaves its mark, especially once again for a debut album. It demonstrates talent and dedication from BEANSIDHE but from a claimed extreme metal band, the album does not live up to expectations.
Regarding Mónt as an atmospheric metal album on the other hand, it works absolutely brilliantly. There’s much room for improvement and for a band that have been around for over a decade, the expectations for a debut album are much higher and unfortunately it didn’t reach the peaks of those. The band however have clearly created a distinguishable sound, unique to them and with more fine-tuning on packing a real punch, BEANSIDHE can be onto a winner.
Mónt isn’t necessarily a bad album that should not be the case as it truly isn’t, it just unfortunately lacked the ability to really stand out and that is not to be at the fault of anyone or anything. Yet again, take away the ‘extreme metal’ label that they have been given and the Swiss band are onto something brilliant.
Mónt is set for release July 28 via Via Nocturna
Like BEANSIDHE on Facebook.