Sadist comes back in full swing with their newest effort titled Hyaena. Hyaena is a concept album that is focused around the aloof and mystical animal. To go with the stunning album art, Sadist pump out a stunning release that is equal parts progressive and death metal that are combined to create an aural sensory overload. Hyaena is a very focused effort, and throughout the entirety of the album you get nothing but a progressive beat down. Hyaena paints interesting soundscapes and overall has one of the most interesting sounds to it.
Walking into this album you are unsure of what to expect, and really even when you’re about half way through you don’t know what to expect still. All throughout the album you get thrown for more loops than a roller coaster. None of the songs sound the same and there are no recycled parts at all. Not one song carries over to the next, no riffs are reused, no melodies rehashed. Everything is one hundred percent pure and original all through Hyaena.
Sadist takes you through the savannas of Africa and takes you on a hunt with the hyenas. They do a great job of painting a myriad of soundscapes and taking you on a trek through each of these soundscapes. Just their death metal elements wouldn’t be able to accomplish the feat of making your mind wander through the plains of Africa. Instead their progressive tendencies such as adding acoustic pieces as well as tribal elements and noises of animals progress their story and really take you to the savannas where these animals can be found.
Hyaena is a very well crafted album and no detail is spared. Each song is well organized and put together, and the entire album is cohesive and works together to bring you a great musical performance. Part of that cohesiveness that you feel is because of the fact that Sadist mixes dizzying and punishing technical death metal with softer more atmospheric and tribal sounds. Not one particular genre steps on the toes of the other, instead they blend well creating a unique sound.
Technical shredding riffs swirl and dance around your head like frenzied piranhas as the drums bulldoze and flatten you. In the background is the bass that leaps out at you like a jackal that was waiting in the shadows for its prey. Accompanying the face shredding musicianship are the vocals that are throat ripping and unrelenting as they are of the higher pitched variety and screamed at you with intent to kill from the very beginning.
A nice added touch to the music are the tribal touches that Sadist injects into the fold. The tribal influences progress the album along as well as add authenticity. When the tribal elements hit, you begin to feel like you are running among the cackle hyenas. Not only does Sadist inject tribal elements into their music, but they also add odd sounds that sound like synths in the background to add a little mysticism on top of everything.
Hyaena and its forty minute odyssey that it takes you on is highly unique. There is a lot going on within this album, and it may take a few more listens than just one to fully have it soak in, but after one listen it is an album that you can listen to over and over again. It isn’t over bearing with its technicality and it doesn’t shove a ton of progressive elements down your throat either. Hyaena is a well balanced album and one that takes you on a unique trek in a very interesting way.