Mahavatar - From The Sun, The Pain, The Wind, The Soil
Escapi Music
Modern Alternative Prog-Metal
10 songs (44:12)
Release year: 2006
Mahavatar, Escapi Music
Reviewed by Ken
Surprise of the month

One word: Wow! That’s how I would describe From The Sun, The Pain, The Wind, The Soil, an album I recently picked up on a whim. Mahavatar is a New York based band that plays a progressive form of modern, alternative metal. The band incorporates crushing metal that ranges from down-tuned chuggers to old school thrash-influenced anthems, all the while incorporating quasi-death/hardcore and clean vocals along with quiet acoustic passages, Middle Eastern-influenced interludes, and killer solos.

One of the biggest surprises here is with the vocals. When I first heard the album I noted a male vocalist doing the heavy vocals, while a female vocalist did the clean vocals—vocals that sounded like a stronger yet equally haunting version of Marianne Faithful. It wasn’t until flipping through the booklet that I found myself questioning who the vocalists really were. Karla Williams—which I assume is female, but I can’t tell from the pics I’ve seen—is the guitarist, but it doesn’t list “vocals” next to her/his name. That distinction rested solely with Lizza Hasan. A quick search on the internet had me scooping up my jaw—which had fallen onto my nuts. Lizza Hasan is female, and the only vocalist in Mahavatar! This isn’t a case of a female vocalist doing heavy vocals but still sounding like a female doing heavy vocals, like Morgan Lander (Kittie), Karyn Crisis (Crisis) or Angela Gossow (Arch Enemy). Hasan truly has a hellacious, naturally guttural sound that doesn’t sound like its emanating from a female throat—an impressive feat.

From The Sun, The Pain, The Wind, The Soil is the band’s second full-length or, rather, their first full-length, Go With The No!, re-released with a different name, a remastering, and two bonus tracks, “BH” and “The Prophecy.” They’ve also released three demos. The first track, “Cult,” is one hell of a tune! The song begins with a piercing metal riff leading into a dark, twisted verse—“this is the message of my cult!”—and chorus. The mid-section features some clean singing and a Middle Eastern-tinged solo that leads into a mellow, introspective outro. “By The Numbers” and “Raw” are both crushing anthems, the latter being a dynamic piece that incorporates acoustic and cleanly-sung interludes. “Open Your Mind” is a catchy, mid-paced sing-along, while “The Prophecy” is a slow, doom-laden monster with a breakneck thrash chorus! “Deep Cobble” and “The Time Has Come” are both dark, haunting masterpieces: slowly rising and falling, grim throughout.

Mahavatar is a band that caught me by surprise; first with their music, then with the dynamic vocals of Lizza Hasan—even the intelligent, poetic and poignant lyrics caught me by surprise. Mahavatar is one killer band! Those not averse to modern metal, and want something quite unique within the genre, would do well to check out From The Sun, The Pain, The Wind, The Soil.

AUDIO: Cult and Psychos

VIDEO: Cult and Deep Cobble

Killing Songs :
Cult, Raw, The Prophecy and Deep Cobble
Ken quoted 90 / 100
Other albums by Mahavatar that we have reviewed:
Mahavatar - Mind Hypnotic Vision Towards Revolution reviewed by Alex and quoted no quote
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There are 4 replies to this review. Last one on Mon Nov 27, 2006 9:21 pm
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