Fission Crater

The studio project of Andreas Hedlund (aka Vintersorg) and Benny Hägglund (Vintersorg’s live drummer), Fission is an outlet of complex melodic thrash metal, more straightforward and less pretentious than anything released recently under the Vintersorg name. Crater is easily recognisable as Hedlund’s work though, from his distinctive voice right down to titles like "Mind Vortex” or the "Chaos Algorithm.” Fission’s sound is multi-layered — progressive keyboard tones, clean and harsh vocals and undistorted guitar parts work in cohesion with pounding drums, cutting leads and driving riffs. But at the same time the tight fit and artful placement of each component gives the album a misleadingly simple feel. It’s a consistent balance all through, but Crater’s title track is one of the best examples of how Fission injects melody and artistry into thrash without defusing any of its metallic ferocity. (Napalm)