Review: Rings of Saturn – Lugal Ki En

rings-of-saturn-lugalRINGS OF SATURN
LUGAL KI EN (2014)

United States, Unique Leader, Aliencore (Technical Deathcore)

Rings of Saturn seems to attract a variety of detractors for a variety of reasons. However, with Lugal En Ki the band’s enthusiasts and critics alike have a great deal to be impressed with, as the Californian space chroniclers have crafted a much more mature and cohesive release on this third full length.

The 12 tracks are essentially based on a simple dynamic – extreme weedly parts paired against thick, ultra heavy riffs. While seemingly predictable, the oracles of alien destruction augment this with elements of the avant-garde and airy, especially in the form of extra terrestrial noises. Also worth noting, Lugal Ki En details other worldly beings that conquer man and then wage war against angels and demons.

This seems like a lot to include in a single album, however, rather than detracting from a singular vision, this combination of weirdness with a solid base allows for wild exploration without becoming self-indulgent. This time around Rings of Saturn let the songs evolve more naturally, and while the spastic bursts of jabbing high notes still exist, listeners can hear a variety of influences and new elements as well. See how “Natural Selection” lurches with Meshuggah-isms, or “Beckon” dips into electronic ambiance, or “Eviscerate” bounces through space like Obscura.

The reason Lugal En Ki merits such a high score (and the hard-earned cash of discerning metalheads) rests within a simple concept: it’s just fun. When was the last time that descriptor was used for something so over the top in technicality or heaviness?

Rating: 9/10
Reviewer: Witness to the Void

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