The Betrayers Judgment - Philosopher
Twin Peak Records
6 songs ()
Release year: 2013
Reviewed by Alex

I normally do not wade into the land of hardcore, since I am a lot less familiar with the references for the review to be entirely relevant. But since I was asked this time around to voice an opinion, the Frenchmen The Betrayer’s Judgment can use this review as evidence for their peers that this old dude was fairly impressed.

The leading track on the album is the opener Broken Mirrors. Opening with the sense of symphonic drama it takes its time to dive into the pummeling, albeit with synthesizers’ vibrations giving it a modern industrial angle. The usual trappings of what I think represents hardcore genre are present on the Philosopher EP. The verses are full of breakneck jagged rhythms, while the choruses are generally smoother. The extreme vocals are either superguttural gurgles (Broken Mirrors) or higher pitched screams (Elapsed Time). And, just like some other hardcore releases I have sampled, The Betrayer’s Judgment is not immune to melodic breakdown with clean (could it be female on Broken Mirrors?) vocals. Yet, their melodies are nice, captivate and have staying power.

The rough-mellow pattern does persist through the first three tracks on Philosopher, but you have to give The Betrayer’s Judgment their due, they attempt to diversify. The title track bleeds slower doomy heaviness. Then, at first you may not even recognize that Broken Mirrors is present here in two versions. I sure didn’t. The second version has techno beat and the same synthesizer vibrations, but even more processed. The band has a feel for the good lead (Broken Mirrors) and on the electronic synthetic version of this track that lead feels almost progressive.

The production of Philosopher is very modern and quite a bit downtuned. The bass drumming is through the floor on Lights Out and bass string plucks feel to be as thick as forearms here. The electronic version of Broken Mirrors is about the only one not to give you a body slam for which you have been conditioned, but the closer The Journey quickly corrects that, closing the EP with some angry brutal thundering, only to dissolve the short journey (pun intended) with some cosmic sounding keys.

Killing Songs :
Broken Mirrors both ways
Alex quoted 70 / 100
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