Peculate – “Pax Tecum”

a1467697983_2Self-Released on June 12th, 2013

Genre: Math-Core, Genre Bending Metal

“Be courteous, obey the law, respect everyone – but if someone puts his hand on ya, send em’ to the cemetery!”

The first words of this album, sampled from a speech by Malcom X, this quote does a pretty great job of summarizing the entire atmosphere and mood of this album – at least in its themes and lyrical content. Much like Peculate’s previous releases, Pax Tecum is an album that hits all over the spectrum of genres, while having its foot firmly planted in metal. Somehow, though, the album manages to explore even more sounds and genres than anything Ben Norton – the singular force behind Peculate – has recorded so far. Not only does it bounce around through metal, rock, ambient, and mixed-meter trickery, it includes influences (even entire sections of songs) of jazz, electronica, and some awesome sampling. The influence behind the themes explored in the album is certainly worth noting, and though the political commentary is still overt and easy to spot, Norton does a better job of embedding these themes in an artful way than before. Though some of the lyrics still read a little bit like a political rally’s speech (and maybe intentionally so,) there are those – like “Class War” – that sing out a little more like most songs. Pax Tecum, if anything, is quite a lot like the stuff that Peculate has done before, but at a much improved level – there’s more genres tied into each other more craftily, more artfully written lyrics, and an album as a whole that covers some really important material.

Tracks I Liked: Suffer Peacefully!!, Never Hurt a Soul!, A Romance!!, Class War!!!

Ben Southworth – July 10th, 2013 – Radio Free Lexington

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