Language is a fantastic marriage of ethereal cleans, brutal riffs, and brand new sounds that make up their latest effort to create a really strong album from start to finish. The Contortionist have really gone in a newer direction, but it pays off if you are willing to give it a change. After hearing the two singles: “Language I” and “Primordial Sound” I was expecting for a really abstract album with nearly all guitars playing on the clean channel. While there is more clean guitar with long delay than Exoplanet or Intrinsic, Language comes with heavy riffs that we have come to expect from The Contortionist. Language I champions the ethereal and ambient clean passages that are used by nearly all progressive metal bands. While most of their peers use these passages as breaks from brutal onslaughts of guitar riffs, Language I sees The Contortionist writing the songs based on the emotions and mood of the songs themselves.
If you were a big fan of Intrinsic, then chances are that you will really like Language. With Intrinsic, The Contortionist moved in a more progressive direction with even more ambience and dynamics than their first album, Exoplanet. Personally I thought that Exoplanet was among the strongest albums that I have heard in the past few years, but I guess that all artists need to evolve. The riffs that come up towards the middle of Language are just as brutal as you could imagine coming from the Contortionist. In fact, the songs in the middle are my favorite because they serve as something of a climax for the entire experience. Because of this the album feels like the listener goes on a sort of journey instead of just ten or so songs being placed together. By the time you get around to “Ebb and Flow” and “Parable,” you are put in a great finale to this piece of art that the Djent masters have created. I think that the end is probably the strongest part of the album. Honestly I love it all.
I would highly recommend this album to anyone who considers themselves a real Contortionist fan. That is, if you liked both Exoplanet and Intrinsic, you will probably love this album. However, if you thought that The Contortionist didn’t live up to your expectations with their second album Language is probably not for you.