English mathcore group Rolo Tomassi have been perfecting their blend of dissonant, chaotic hardcore and angelic melodies for a little over a decade now, and on the followup to 2015's Grievances, the band have bested themselves. Time Will Die and Love Will Bury It is a carefully crafted mix of clean, jazzy melodies and mind-bending hardcore rhythms that show a different level of balance and composure than on previous releases.
From the soft and elegant synths on "Towards Dawn" leading into the triumphant sounding "Aftermath," Rolo Tomassi start things off on a lighter note, which quickly shifts toward more brutal territory. Following an ominous intro, "Rituals" turns into black metal-like blast beats and howling shrieks. Given the band's tendency to shake up the foundations of heavy music, though, the track fleets between ferocity and beauty through an underlying piano track.
Vocalist Eva Spence uses her vocal capabilities to their fullest extent on Time Will Die and Love Will Bury It, seamlessly swapping between demonic growls and her enchanting pop-oriented cleans. On "The Hollow Hour," Spence shifts back-and-forth, from harsh screams to smooth croons, as the rest of the band masterfully adjust the mood of the song through grinding chugs and soaring melodies.
The band manage a fantastic balance of moods across the album, gradually building to their heaviest moments on jazzy hardcore track "Balancing the Dark" and the tech-heavy "Alma Mater." Following the ambient and melodic tones of "A Flood Of Light," the more solemn second half of the record sporadically ranges into heavier territory, particularly on the chaotic yet sludgy "Whispers Among Us." Just like the record began, Time Will Die and Love Will Bury It ends with a soothing, melodic vibrancy. Following a gloomy piano intro, the band form a massive wall of sound on "Contretemps" that descends into a graceful send-off on "Risen."
Although Rolo Tomassi's four previous records are phenomenal in their own right, this album emits a more structured sense of chaos than before. The days of the band's video game-like synth tones living amongst hardcore mayhem are long gone, replaced with a more developed sound and sophisticated energy. (Holy Roar)