Making music can be a grind. The countless hours I have worked on music in my lifetime is something I don’t even want to think about. It’s also quite frustrating showing it to your friends and they text you something like “pretty good man.” You can’t really blame them but that’s all they have to say. For Sage’s Path which is a solo effort he stated his DAW clocked him in at 3,370 hours across 1700 sessions in the past 1900 days. That’s a lot of work for his album Our Greatest Weakness.
His music you might call experimental metal. It’s not straight metal. There are orchestral parts, subdued breakdowns and more which deviate from more straightforward metal. His vocals are all over the place stylistically. He screams. He does spoken word and more but whatever he attempts is covered in some kind of dramatic affectation. I really couldn’t tell what his natural voice was because he changes his tone and delivery quite often. It’s kind of like he is playing a bunch of different characters in a play. A good amount of time he sounds pissed off like a disgruntled citizen whose luck hasn’t gone the right way for a long time. I have to admit the hyperbolic vocal delivery was sometimes hard for me to connect with. When I was a younger man in my twenties it was easier for me to deal with the affectation of artists like Trent Reznor or Marilyn Manson but now that I’m way past my twenties I find it harder to indulge in such dramatic theatrics - I blame my age.
The songs have this dead serious quality to them. It sort of reminded me of a band like Tool. It’s a little bit like that with more nihilism. He pours out lines such as, “I'm done, I've had it—I'll see my ego to the goddamn door” and “All things are temporary / Moments pass as they carry on deeper into the abyss, the unfathomably infinite.” These type of lines on paper can feel like the indignant thoughts of a man who is so sick and tired of being alive he wants to end it all or a Buddhist who finally reaches Nirvana. The delivery is such that the former is more fitting.
My favorite aspect of this album was the diversity in the structure and his willingness to attempt different styles. There was a lot of unpredictably on the songs and that’s definitely something I can appreciate.
I think this album will appeal to fans of metal as well as people who might be looking for a new angle to the genre. Additionally, if you are sort of pissed off and need a cathartic release this might be a good place to start as well.
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