25th January 2017 – Agonia Records
01. On Blinding Larks
04. The Rattle Of Black Teeth
05. The Lazarus Cord
06. Brass Dogs
Many bands don’t care for their music by the time they’ve come to release it. In fact, the repeated listening in service of making the best album possible can only serve to make sure you don’t go back and listen very often. It takes a certain type of bravery to go back into your previous efforts, put them under the microscope then decide to turn them on their heads.
Lost Signal can and should be seen as an effort to unify the past and present of <code>, from black metal beginnings into their more progressive metal later years. The first three tracks on Lost Signal are taken directly from their previous and most progressive offering mut; “On Blinding Larks”, “Cocoon” and, “Affliction” find themselves re-engineered into something decidedly heavier than their original form. Distorted guitar lines replace clean ones, the vocals find themselves more aggressive, and their drums are more menacing.
The first two feel somewhat weighed down by the changes made their compositions, however “Affliction” blurs the lines quite nicely. Arguably the most aggressive track on the previous record, the changes made here really add something; growled vocals, ominous guitar lines and added depth on the rhythm section serve to make this distinctly more menacing.
The latter half of the EP deals with cuts from the band’s early work, re-recorded with newest vocalist Wacian taking on tracks from before his time with his memorable vocals. In its reworked state, ”The Rattle Of Black Teeth“ feels more succinct but at the same time more expansive, and with the reflective vocal harmonies its reworking can be commended.
“The Lazarus Cord” and “Brass Dogs” feel somewhat unfinished, however; the former hearkens to the latter works of David Bowie; it’s emotional and introspective whilst trying to not waiver from the line <code> have formed between their old incarnation and their new. The latter however is missing an aggression that the production on the original delivered.
Of course revisited albums are nothing new, but whilst <code> have tried valiantly to merge their past and present, the end result is somewhat foggy. The classic tracks in their reworked state add new life into already brilliant tracks, however the attempts at beefing up their recent cuts feels utterly contrived. That said, the clarity of production afforded to the older recordings really does show off the nuances that could have been there from the beginning. r