Following an eponymously titled debut EP two years ago, we now have the imminent release of Boston, Massachusetts’ The Offering’s debut album, ‘Home’, courtesy of Century Media. And it’s a bold, confident, daring and… well, just plain fucking fantastic debut. Why? Imagine something along the lines of Nevermore but with Mercenary’s progressively seamless blend of various metal subgenres, and the theatrical energy of Manticora. Then bring in a lot more groove and low-end bass resonance, and a whole ton of exhilaratingly innovative flair. And deliver your wildly inventive compositions with a relentlessly passionate virtuosity throughout; all topped off with an array of disparate vocals styles, from growls to high-end Halford-esque histrionics, and everything in-between, plus some great harmonies. Like the sound of all that? Then, undoubtedly, ‘Home’ will be right up your street.
It all melds together extraordinarily well, considering the wildly inventive blend of contrasting elements. There’s no “for the sake of” innovation or mindless fusion to be heard in any of the tracks. Everything’s purposeful; the innovation is refined, and the melding comes across as a perfect multi-genre synthesis. The epitome of their brilliance (and every track has its own sense of brilliance) erupts in an explosion of refined creativity within the album’s closing title track; a 14+ minute masterpiece. Such is the breadth of The Offering’s amalgam of subgenres, it’s like a sonic diachrony of metal’s decades-old history, all on one album; all within the same song, at times.
Throughout a stunningly produced and mixed album, performances from each of the guys are breathtaking in each and every track. The delivery of their material is fervently dynamic. And the vocals are equally dynamic and varied. Alexander Richichi’s clean voice has a hint of Metal Church’s Mike Howe in places, but this man’s vocals have so much depth, breadth and character, which is vital for the multifarious instrumentations over which he sings. A lesser vocalist would undoubtedly get lost within the layers of imaginatively conceived fusions.
The Offering ooze serious talent and seemingly boundless creativity, and ‘Home’ is a kick up the generic arse of those bands who see fit to regurgitate the same old, tired idioms and clichés, again and again. I hasten to add there’s nothing wrong with a bit of genericism if compositional excellence is exercised and maintained - music shouldn’t always be about wild innovation. Its purpose can simply be to entertain, of course. However, with ‘Home’, The Offering have delivered a refreshing blast of energising, and innovative yet accessible, metal. Entertaining and both affectively and cognitively stimulating. Fantastic stuff!
Review by Mark Holmes
2nd August 2019
1) Wate Away
4) A Dance with Diana
5) Failure (S.O.S)
COUNTRY OF ORIGIN:
"Such is the breadth of The Offering’s amalgam of subgenres, it’s like a sonic diachrony of metal’s decades-old history, all on one album; all within the same song, at times."