Toilet ov Hell has premiered Sage of Shekhinah, the forthcoming album from Progressive Death Metal Masters CONTRARIAN! Stream it in its entirety at the link below!
CONTRARIAN will release Sage of Shekhinah, the band’s 5th album, March 17 on CD, vinyl, and digital formats via Willowtip Records.
“From the moment it creaks to life in its bizarre intro and accelerates into chaos to its final closing notes, this album creates an experience unlike any the band has created to date.”
– Toilet ov Hell
“Always a constant source of unique ideas and fascinating metal heaviness, Sage of Shekhinah is another triumphant release for the mighty Contrarian.”
– Games, Brrraaains & A Head-Banging Life
“An album very rich in technical and progressive ideas.” (9.5/10)
“What this proves is that technical metal in the right hands can be a joyous experience, rather than a sterile and clinical collection of ideas tacked together to show off those performing.” (9/10)
– Musipedia of Metal
“Whereas previous effort Only Time Will Tell harried involuted angles at unbelievable speeds to honor progressive metal – yet drive it forward – the newest collection of songs quiesce the firestorm with remarkable restraint.”
“It’s brain-bending but inviting, extending a hand through intricate yet digestible guitar work and time song structures.”
– Invisible Oranges
“Remember how Chuck Schuldiner used to make Death sound mind boggling and yet somehow accessible? That’s the same kind of vibe you get here.
– The Killchain
“Contrarian are the sound of pure satisfying enjoyment in progressive death metal form.”
– Wonderbox Metal
“Sage of Shekhinah delivers a familiar value without feeling like iteration,
a record that never felt held back by their focus on classic progressive death metal but instead bolstered by their mastery of those already above-average standards of musicianship and their own creative, rhythmically
– Grizzly Butts
“Impressive high-wire performances and so many layered moving parts.”
– No Clean Singing
“The spaced out quintet hammer out a series of dizzyingly complex jazzy numbers throughout. Sage is by turns savagely pummelling, intellectually perplexing and at times stunningly beautiful.”
– The Metal Observer
“Contrarian play a kind of ultra-technical death metal in the more complex style of the genre’s originators, Death, but updated to incorporate many flairs, tropes, and sounds from what the genre has been doing best over the last decade or two.”
– Heavy Blog is Heavy
“Their most mature and passionate album yet. Don’t underestimate them.”
“It is time to recognize [guitarist Jim] Tasikas for not only his musical brilliance, but also his contributions to our community as a true patron of the art of progressive death metal.”
– Technical Music Review
True to their namesake, CONTRARIAN continue to defy the odds and steer the head of progressive/technical death metal towards a more organic approach. On Sage of Shekhinah, the band counteracts genre norms with nuanced composition and subtle production.
1. Sage of Shekhinah
2. In Gehenna
3. Ibn al Rawandi
4. The Guide for the Perplexed
5. Zabur of Satfiyah al Shamal
6. Apollonius of Tyana
7. A Madman From Island Patmos
Guest Bouzouki appearance by Michael Paouris on “Sage of Shekhinah”
Guest Bass appearance by Jack Eaton on “Apollonius of Tyana”
Guitars recorded by Doug White at Watchmen Studios, Lockport, NY
Special thanks to Bill Bodily for engineering bass recordings.
Drums recorded at Solitude Studios PA
All songs written by Jim Tasikas
All arrangements by Contrarian
Produced by Jim Tasikas
Mixed by Neil Kernon for Auslander
Mastered by Alan Douches
Jim Tasikas and Brian Mason exclusively play ESP guitars.
Alex Cohen exclusively plays Paiste Cymbals.
Jim Tasikas – Guitars, Keyboards, Bouzouki
Brian Mason – Lead Guitars
Ed Paulsen – Bass
Alex Cohen – Drums
JaKob SiN – Vocals