Oracle – Tales Of Pythia (EP)

Release date: 08th October 2018 || Genre: Thrash/groove metal  || Label: Self-released 

Northern Ireland’s Oracle have a pretty straight forward approach for the most part; grab a hook, and smash it into people’s ears. It’s an effective way to get across their message of humanity’s disastrous relationship with our environment. Hailing from Belfast, Northern Ireland, Tales Of Pythia is their first release, and shows a lot of promise, with intensity and a sickened delivery. It takes its time raising its chthonic head, shedding the tumbling filth of ages of neglect in its path. An earthbound, subterranean leviathan awakening.

A looseness flows throughout this record, which seems utterly natural; an appeal for followers of genuine heaviness to shun the modern trappings of overly technical rigidity. They don’t care to rush things, either. Oracle are certainly up for a hefty dose of the slow stuff. This isn’t sludge, though. It just lies sometimes in the same dirt. You’ll still hear some intriguing, challenging music, but it isn’t any more fussy than it needs to be.

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Largely this comes about when things lean in a vaguely middle-eastern or Mediterranean direction. It could all be in my head, but I feel like these moments are intentionally tied into the album title. Pythia was also known as ‘the Oracle of Delphi’, believed to be a conduit to the prophecies of Apollo (God of music and plague, among other things). Taking this into consideration – along with the subject matter, and band name – a rather beautiful, if tragic, image begins to appear in regards to the thought process behind the whole.

If there is just one obvious thing this EP does well that sets it apart, it’s spew out bile splattered disgust, but it appears likely there is far more to Oracle than the shattered surface. There is heart, and soul, and intelligence lurking below. Here’s my prophecy: this is going to be far from their best work in the long run, and it is already both intriguing and instant.


Grade: A-

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