Transient State – Rearranged
Staying true to my role as recipient of all releases leaning more towards the extreme subgenres within the wide spectrum of our beloved prog music over here at the Progspace, it was naturally my duty as well to have a look at Transient State‘s debut album “Rearranged”. Transient State hail from Leiden in the Netherlands and play a djent heavy, (whatever-)core influenced kind of modern progressive metal. The vocals of Jeoffrey Warmerdam range from deep growls over a higher pitched aggressive scream (with some more variety of tones in between) all the way to a clean delivery of melodies where the songs call for. The 8 songs are quite varied, some going into a more brutal direction, some focus more on atmospheres and melodies. But they all have one thing in common: especially the guitars and bass are expertly handled by Matthijs Vliegenthart, Bram Heijs and Thomas Cochrane respectively.
I had the chance to see them live on one of their release gigs at Complexity Fest in Haarlem, were it became all the more obvious. Despite the odds that were against them (no soundcheck, bass player Thomas being sick with high fever for days and literally just got out of bed for the gig), they pulled off a remarkable show, worthy of opening this big festival. On the other hand, with a string section that strong, the remaining two members paled a little in comparison. Drummer Nico de Wit’s performance was very focused, though at times he seemed at the very limit of his skills. Nothing a little more live experience can’t improve. Finally, vocalist Jeoffrey Warmerdam proved to be the weakest link in the live setting as of yet. Though his versatile approach to extreme vocals came across as brutal as on the album, he struggled at the concert with his clean delivery, but that also might have been due to bad sound/monitoring. I am pretty confident though that they will catch up with more and more live experience.
The singlemost thing on Rearranged (and thus in Transient State’s music) that is least to my liking however are Jeoffrey’s high pitched aggressive screams, because they are hitting a frequency that just doesn’t seem to sit right with the music. But luckily they only dominate the first song, so there is still plenty to like on Rearranged. Fierce, ultra brutal breakdowns, polyrhythmic high speed riffs, soaring melodies, intricate atmospheric arrangements, the thundering, yet melodic bass in the short instrumental interlude ‘Omni’: Transient State have a wide musical palette on offer and they know how to knit all the different parts together into coherent songs.
With “Rearranged”, Transient State release a promising debut album, appealing to fans of the more extreme core side of the wide prog spectrum.