Review from Ave Noctum

October 21, 2020
From: Ave Noctum
Published: October 21, 2020

I went to check out the credentials of this band but unfortunately my initial general search led me to a lot of advice about post death legal documents and settling disputes. The reality of this nicely packaged album couldn’t be more different. Thanks to the label, I was able to learn that this second album from Wills Dissolve is in summary a 32-minute exploration of the loneliness and sacrifice of astro-technological advancement, and of the cosmos through space in search of another planet. I listened to the teaser and the trailer and it was clear that this is a band with a vision. It’s interesting to note that Wills Dissolve draw on the likes of Opeth, Enslaved and Swallow the Sun.

Houston calling … it’s eerie out there in space. The journey begins. “Echoes” is one movement – I’ll call it that rather than a mundane track. The singer’s voice mirrors the haunting scene. The musical development is decidedly that of Opeth. The picture builds up gradually. It’s an unknown world and Wills Dissolve bring mystery. Five minutes in, it becomes harsh both musically and vocally. A distant voice contrasts with the new leaden-heavy atmosphere. Technical metal is mixed in, and we now have a multi-coloured spectrum. At this stage you have to be ok about changes and transformations when listening to this. I would have liked a little more time to indulge in these rich tapestries as we work through many evocative scenes. The instrumentals represent ferocity as a Haken style high end vocal is superimposed before the world becomes completely black. This gives way to a lush and soft acoustic scene, matched by the reflective style and content of the lyrics. There is equilibrium. There is a now a welcome sense of timelessness. This world does not stand still however and like a rush of blood the tempo quickens and the mood gets harsher. The sound becomes more sinister and sampled, growls match the dark drum progression. The scene is now weighty. A technical flurry bursts in like a cosmic storm. The situation is becoming critical. The despairing vocalist seems to be battling against the elements as a whirlwind of heavy sounds breaks out, slows down and reappears. A heavy progressive death metal passage ensues. There’s no time for reflection now. This is an uncompromising place. The storm passes and to a melancholic-sounding acoustic background, the vocalists reflect on the status of their lives and the emptiness around them. Now we can imbibe the solitary scene and the accompanying musicianship. Like a threat, the music gets heavier and discomforting. Drums roll, sounds get distorted and growls return. It’s dark and dangerous out there. The end is chilling and sad as our intrepid travellers reflect once more on the hopeless cause. The capsule is damaged, oxygen is lost and all that is left is the cold and endless void to ponder and the vision of the narrator’s body being carried away to the abyss.

This is an album of many creative elements. My only criticism is that the journey moves too quickly at the start. I’d have liked more time to absorb the rich passages. But I settled into the musical and lyrical journey, through which Wills Dissolve expertly guide us. “Echoes” is a powerful and imaginative album.

Rating: 8/10
Reviewed by: Andrew Doherty


Review from The Elite Extremophile

October 7, 2020
From: The Elite Extremophile
Published: October 6, 2020 

Album-long songs have a rich tradition in progressive metal. Edge of Sanity’s 1996 album Crimson is the best-known of these, but Inter Arma, Meshuggah, and others have dabbled in this format. And that’s not even touching on the countless albums where the individual tracks flow together. And while any band can put a 30-plus-minute track to record, it takes another level of skill to make it consistently good. A good album-l...

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Review from Cult Metal Flix

September 29, 2020
From: Cult Metal Flix
Published: September 24, 2020 

There’s only the one track here. A whopping thirty- two minutes! Hey, Doom genre put that in your pipe and smoke it (whatever that means?) The build is going to be frustrating for those not accustomed to such but for all others it’s more than worth the anticipation and dragging the ears through a landscape which appears to be patching itself together as the audio plays out. The track tells a tale; weaving a narrative of an as...

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Review from Headbanging Reviews

September 23, 2020
From: Headbanger Reviews
Published: September 21, 2020

There is a rarely seen art across the world of metal that I feel is slowly becoming more of a thing that the masses are becoming more welcome to over time, but it’s still exceeding well: the one-track album. I don’t mean a quick single and, boom, that’s it. I mean the 30+ minute experiences that are meant to challenge the listener in showing them what the band is capable of as well as an exercise for the band to see what ...

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Review from Subterraneo Webzine

September 18, 2020
From: Subterraneo Webzine
Published: September 17, 2020

ace un tiempo que estoy en Subterraneo Webzine y en ese lapso he podido traer varias bandas de mi agrado. Una gran mayoría han sido descubiertas y traídas por mi cuenta. Otras en cambio se me han ofrecido o he descubierto gracias a este medio. Una de esas bandas fue WILLS DISSOLVE y su debut The heavens are not on fire, que me sorprendió gratamente en muchos aspectos, y por lo tanto vaticiné que en un futuro sería muy int...

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Review from The Progressive Subway

September 18, 2020
From: The Progressive Subway
Published: September 12, 2020

August 28th was a special day for prog metal. There were at least 10 prog metal (related) artists who brought out a new full length that day, and (almost) all of them seemed worthwhile to check out (see this overview I made). One of those new records was Echoes by a young band called Wills Dissolve. A single 31 minute song with strong similarities to Opeth? I’ve gotta hear that. Extreme progressive metal (as I like to cal...

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Review from Metal Integral

September 7, 2020
From: Metal Integral
Published: September 5, 2020 

En 2018, nous avions écrit tout le bien que nous pensions de The Heavens Are Not On Fire, premier album auto-produit des Texans de WILLS DISSOLVE. Pour son deuxième opus, le groupe a placé la barre encore plus haut, en ne proposant qu'une seule composition, longue de plus de 31 minutes. Un format qui témoigne d'une ambition à la hausse, mais qui ne peut en aucun cas valider par anticipation la qualité d'un exercice ô combien...

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Review from Metal Wave

September 7, 2020
From: Metal Wave
Published: September 3, 2020 

Prevalentemente affascinati dal mondo cosmico, gli americani Wills Dissolve rilasciano il secondo full lenght della propria carriera dopo il buon risultato ottenuto con il disco di debutto datato 2013. Questo “Echoes” evoca la linea stilistica della band che, pur essendo death metal, in realtà offre un quadro compositivo molto atmosferico grazie alle dolci melodie che si propagano all’interno, con altalenanti passaggi acustici e...

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Review from Makeshift Altars

September 3, 2020
From: Makeshift Altars
Published: September 2, 2020

You can't not attract me with an ISIS inspired name like Wills Dissolve. That's my favorite track off of Panopticon, c'mon now. Not that Wills Dissolve, whom I will henceforth refer to as WD to avoid confusion, have anything to do with ISIS or post metal (maybe a little bit); but hot damn do they pretty well live up to such a name.

WD are a progressive metal band at heart with healthy smatterings of blackened death metal, and Echoe...

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Review from Metal Storm

September 1, 2020
From: Metal Storm
Published: August 29, 2020

When I first heard the name Wills Dissolve, I expected an Isis clone post-metal band; instead, Echoes is an extreme prog epic of the finest quality.

Doing a single-song album is always a bold move, particularly on a sophomore record. And yet Houston quartet Wills Dissolve, presumably named after the track from Isis' Panopticon, have absolutely nailed it with Echoes, a single 30-minute track narrating the journey of an astronaut headed tow...

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 Released: August 28, 2020
Genre: Progressive Metal
(Prog-rock, Black Metal, Ambient