Allow me to introduce you to The Schoenberg Automation; an assemblage of Australian madmen whose latest full-length record, “Vela”, is an absolute death metal math monster.

“Vela”, like a demanding boss battle at the end of an epic video game, requires (a) me to gather myself before facing it in battle (b) repetitive plays to begin comprehension of its power. Vela towers high above its foes and crushes down on them with a stomp attack worth something equivalent to 9,999 damage points.

The Schoenberg Automation’s style is certainly an original one. With roots to bands like Ion Dissonance, The Dillinger Escape Plan, and The Red Chord and fast grooves like Ever Forthright, TSA is terrifyingly fun to listen to. And MEAN. Literally, every song starts off heavy as all hell, then STAYS heavy as hell with an extensive collection of sporadic shredderies. The schizophrenic riffs take nothing from the song’s flow. TSA can maneuver amongst tempos and slaughtering patterns with ease. While a sprinkling of strategically placed jazz snippets adds an extra layer to TSA.The production of the album is perfect for the music in my opinion. The guitars are gritty, weighty and serious even during spazzy high-neck licks. I absolutely love the drums on Vela, especially the sections where the bell is getting whacked on in crazy patterns. An example can be found about halfway through track “All Roads Lead To Rome.” Those bits definitely call for some rewinds. The vocals are straight up death metal front to back with seemingly minimal mastering used, aka RAW as f***. I can hear anger…but it makes me happy. In the promo video for track “Where are we, in a cube?” the bass player uses the same bass as I have but I could never get it sounding like that. Vicious rumbling.

“Stop A God Midsentence” is an appropriate title for this mid-album interlude that differs vastly from the typical and lesser attempts at this. It sets an eerie scene for possibly my favorite track “Arecibo.” I cannot exactly classify the happenings in this song but damn it’s a killer track.

The Schoenberg Automation fills every second of the 46 minute Vela with hard hitting and smart entertainment.

– Tyler Dermitt

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