Post-Rock, Rock

hubris. – Metempsychosis (Review)

Artist:  hubris.
Album: Metempsychosis
Genre: Post-Rock
Country: Switzerland
Release Date: 13th of March, 2020
Released via Art As Catharsis Records

We all know about Greek mythology and history of ancient Greece, whether from school, videogames, books or movies. Of course, there were musicians before who already released works concerned with that age here and there – but compared to the 50s and 60s or history from the early 20th century, the interest in the aforementioned period seemed to be little – not for me, though. I like the antiquity very much and it seems that there is a gradual resurrection of this topic at least in literature, since Stephen Fry published two books about the Greek world of Gods and heroic sagas, which both became very popular. I was excited to hear what hubris. were going to achieve with their work about ancient Greek mythology.

The six-song long album Metempsychosis showcases six different characters from Greek legends. The first song is about “Hepius”, maybe better known as Asclepius, the god of medicine. It’s a very meditative song that starts as if you were waking up hopefully gaining energy. Then, the song breaks out of the meditative routine, slightly increasing the tension. The second song is more playful and more colourful with ecstatic elements and with that combination they hit the title “Dionysus” perfectly. The god of joy and wine is represented well with this song, in which deeper-sounding elements build a solid framework. With the third song “Adonis”, which is the icon for beauty (like me), hubris. begin to transcend with a wide and heavy sound structure, but always comfortable and patient. But throughout the song, the tension rises again, clearly leading to a climax within the song with a slight BOOM – and ends more quietly and hopefully.

“Icarus” and “Dedalus” are not only the next two songs, in the narrations Icarus is Dedalus’ son and both fled from their prison with wings built by the great inventor Dedalus. The whole story about the flight of the Icarus constitute the only vocals of the song, accompanied by music and riffs that can clearly be identified as wind – and directly lead to his father. “Dedalus”, who is also prominent for the labyrinth on Crete (the one with the Minotaur), is faster and in a higher tone than the other songs. I liked the transitions to different parts of the songs, the complex riffs and drums as well as the melancholic note towards its end. The last song “Heracles” has something special. It playfully shows you the 12 trials Heracles had to complete, given to him as an atonement by the King of Tiryns Eurystheus. Triumph, pain and the emotion which Heracles had to confront in the moments when he captured the Erymanthian Boar, slayed the Nemean Lion or cleaned the Augean stables are well preserved.

What I like the most on this album is the fact that you can hear the story of the ancient protagonists and the life and death of the people in the stories within the songs. Some other bands give their songs fancy titles but in the end, you cannot really say “Yeah, that was part of the song”. hubris. easily achieved that they can set a kind of reminiscent sound throughout the album that is different enough in the end from song to song and as a result nothing feels repetitive. The whole sound is very delightful, at some points I would like to hear some harder riffs and elements, or at least a little bit longer – something which some Post-Rock fans couldn’t like if they were fans of rather harder parts, but it perfectly fits to the tone of the topic. The cross comparisons of the band to Long Distance Calling are appropriate, but with a more lovely sound structure. With Metempsychosis hubris. recorded a beautiful record about Greek mythology which might be considered as a musical version of Ovid’s poem “Metamorphoses”.

★ ★ ★ ★ ★ ★ ★ ★ ☆ ☆

8 / 10

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