Bermuda – The Wandering (2012)

Over the past several years, djent has taken the metal scene by storm. Unsurprisingly, there is a sea of metalcore and deathcore bands that are incorporating the style into their music. I would normally say that this trend has worn out its welcome, but I’m frequently reminded that there are bands playing this style that make it worth coming back to every now and then. Bands such as Aristeia, Volumes, Structures, and Bermuda are all shining examples of djent-influenced metalcore/deathcore that is executed wonderfully. Bermuda’s debut album, The Wandering, was initially supposed to be released on May 8th via Mediaskare Records, but has since been postponed until July 17th.

Bermuda’s 2011 EP, Isolationist(s), was very well done, but it was far too short. The Wandering builds off of the sound that the band exhibited on their previous effort and offers us close to forty-five minutes of djent-influenced deathcore. In my opinion, The Wandering is ideal in terms of length and contains enough material to hold fans over until the next Bermuda release.

With more material, however, comes more opportunities for monotony. The band avoids this issue, for the most part, but the vocals could stand to be more varied. Vocalist Corey Bennett’s vocal delivery consists almost entirely of the same low growls. His growls are pretty ferocious and nowhere near bad, but they become less interesting as the album progresses. Most people will probably not have a problem with the vocals, but I generally prefer vocal variation in the music that I listen to because it helps dispel any notions of monotony.

There is one song, however, that does have a great degree of variety. Sachael, my personal favorite track on The Wandering, contains an incredibly well-executed clean vocal chorus. I know what you’re thinking: “clean vocals in my Bermuda? To hell with this!” In a world where more and more heavy bands are incorporating mediocre clean vocals into their music, you are right to be skeptical. The clean vocals in Sachael, however, are done tastefully. Think of the way Volumes used clean vocals on their latest release, Via, and you’ll get the gist of Bermuda’s use of clean vocals. They’re not whiny, over-used, or forced and they make Sachael the best track on the album.

The rest of the music contained on The Wandering is not necessarily anything mind-blowing, but the band manages to keep you entertained by being incredibly heavy and bouncy. The most notable part of this album, in my opinion, is the ferocious drumming of Miguel Ochoa. Ochoa is clearly a very versatile drummer and his talent is frequently showcased throughout The Wandering. Whether he’s blasting away (Process of Drowning) or slowing it down for a change of pace (Obstruction), Ochoa is obviously very competent. 

While The Wandering is nothing too incredibly unique, it is still a worthwhile album and Bermuda has demonstrated that they are one of the more notable bands in the djent-influenced deathcore scene. The vocal delivery is a little monotonous, but the band still has time and room for improvement in that area. In addition, I think Bermuda would benefit from including more clean vocal passages (although not too many) in the future.

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By Mike O’Hara ~ Me Gusta Reviews