BIS-NTE – Broken
- by ER
- Posted on 03-02-2023
RELEASE YEAR: 2023
BAND URL: https://www.bisonteofficial.com/
This review is the 4th in the 5 album expose on the work of Palma de Mallorca Spanish vocalist, guitarist and bassist Vicente Javier Payá Galindo, the creator of 5 metal bands: Golgotha, Unbounded Terror, Decrapted, Bis.nte and Sons Of Cult – all currently on David Sánchez “Dave Rotten” González’s Xtreem Records or its subdivision Fighter Records. Every review in the series will concern each of those bands’ latest album in the above order.
Bisönte (aka Bisonte aka, currently, Bis-nte) is a project created by Vicente Payá and female clean vocalist María J. Lladó in 2020, for the purpose of, according to the official website (link below), playing music much darker than either member’s regular bands but which started out as a doom/stoner band akin to Black Sabbath or Electric Wizzard, which the independently released debut album, “Ancestral Punishment”²⁰²¹ showcased. Recorded as Maria J Llado (later Golgotha) on vocals, Vicente Paya on guitars and keyboards additionally with Andrea Trujillo on bass and Pablo Herrero on drums, featuring a horrifying cover of a man’s living intestines being eaten by a demonic bison, (a nod to Cattle Decapitation’s “Humanure”?) was a good album owing much to My Dying Bride’s “Cry Of Mankind” as touching the sound and ancient Black Sabbath as to the stylings, but was a rather one-dimentional affair, although in places it revealed more progressive aspirations realized on, this here, the follow-up “Broken” released this month. Regarding the band’s changing name spelling (bandcamp still has Bisönte) it’s possible, even likely, that the spelling Bis-nte was settled on to avoid confusion with either the Mexican stoner/doom/sludge act or the Mexican thrash/groove band, both named and spelled Bisonte but with a totally different logo, the Spaniards using an actual bison head for “ö” so why they couldn’t leave it at Bisönte is anyone’s guess.
While, again, according to the official website, the definitive line-up of the group is yet to be determined, “Broken” was recorded as the core two member line-up of Vicente and Maria as before but with session death metal gutturals by Daniela “Dahlien” “Dáya” Neumanová and session drums and keyboards by Javier Fernández Milla who also excellently produced “Broken”. Although the core sometimes funeral doom and stoner metal is still the basis of Bis-nte’s sound, there’s noticeable death metal influence, and not just the vocals, making it more of a death/doom record, especially because, comparing with the debut, there’s a lot more going on and there’s a lot more variety with increased overall heaviness. Regarding both features, take the flagship number and easily the best on the record, the perfect “Mother Nature”, seemingly a sequel to Golgotha’s “Farewell To Mankind”, at least regarding the subject matter, nature being tortured by foolish mankind which bites the hand that feeds it to its inevitable imminent doom. The track starts with some seagull (?) squeals or some other kind of animal before ushering the simple yet most devastating and effective riffs on the record, if not in Bis-nte’s career, immediately following with some middle era Paradise Lost melody recalling Gregor Macintosh. The second favorite, the massive opener “Army Of Faith” is a sprawling baobab and the most progressive song, with enough twists and turns to be considered progressive but not enough to actually cross into the progressive metal genre. Bis-nte also ends on a fantastic note, with the multimelodic “Venom In The Blood” again, a nod to classic Paradise Lost.
Whereas most songs on this 7 track record don’t fall below 5/6 quality, two just don’t impress me as much: “Of Love Undone” and “The Evil Inside” (which starts like Swallow The Sun’s “Empires Of Loneliness” without the spoken part and features samples of someone talking about God where it’s impossible to make out what he’s actually saying) seemingly treading the same one-dimentional path of the debut which contributes to the lower score to some degree, but, overall, this is a pure 5/6 album through and through with moments of brilliance I noted earlier.
Bis-nte’s second album, “Broken” is a very good affair but it does fall below in comparison to Vicente’s regular output from both of his main bands, especially the recent releases, but, nevertheless is just another witness to the man’s instrumental talent and songwriting abilities.