The decision is a bold and downright strange one, as you would imagine that the band would look to produce something to give back to the fans for their support but after due consideration, its actually something I wish more artists would consider in the twilight of their careers. It was a gambit that paid off for the Arctic Monkeys with Tranquility Base Hotel and Casino (after everyone got used to it) and in an age where artists are happy to reproduce their signature sound to diminishing returns, its refreshing to see Manes not rest on their laurels and try out something new.
Manes themselves have stated that “Slow Death Music Sequence’ shouldn’t be seen as a glass-half-empty, but more like a pile of dry, broken glass on a hardwood floor.” and this statement accurately reflects the album’s tone, pushing the limits of progressive metal by taking a traditional metal sound and blending in copious elements from different genres. The album has an atmospheric and even other-worldly feel as a result and it mostly works to the album’s benefit, allowing for room to breathe which allows all the different sounds and elements to come together. There are moments where the album wanders into nu-metal territory but overall the album has a really good feel to it and has something for everyone.
Opening tracks Endetidstegn and Scion set the tone of the album, going from meditative and atmospheric to loud and chaotic within moments. However, if you are looking for your more traditional metal sound then tracks like Poison Enough For Everyone or Building The Ship of Theseus are really solid efforts that help to break up Slow Motion Death Sequence’s more sprawling atmospheric moments.
Overall, Slow Motion Death Sequence is a bold and ambitious album which cements Manes’ status as masters of their craft. This is an essential album for any die-hard metal fan but its still worth a listen even if metal isn’t your cup of tea.