Bay Area deathcore quartet Rings of Saturn have been turning their extra-terrestrial morse codes into guitar tablature for quite some time, now. Having started out as a high school project, into what is now, a full-time band, Rings of Saturn have gone on to deliver some insane performances in the studio, spawning three full-length records. Now, three years on from “Lugal Ki En”, the band have now given 2017 the honour of bringing out “Ultu Ulla” to the world.
This being my first proper listening session with Rings of Saturn, I wasn’t particularly prepared for what they were about to offer to the speakers. But, one thing I’ve always been aware of since hearing the name, is that Rings of Saturn really love delivering some esoteric nature into their songwriting. Tracks such as ‘Servant of this Sentience’, ‘Margidda’ and ‘Immemorial Essence’ are some great examples of the extremity and density that the band bring to the table. Whether it be breakdowns or complicated scales, Rings of Saturn have a knack of bringing an eerie vibe to a brutal sound.
Considering that Rings of Saturn are known for their technicality on their set of strings, the highlight of “Ultu Ulla” is really fixated on Lucas Mann and Miles Dimitri Baker’s dexterity and camaraderie. Despite the fact that a lot of their songs a structured very well, there’s still a lack of spirit in the production value. It’s commendable for them to have some well-composed material, but if there was less of a digital ring, it could be a much livelier and natural record.
Still, even though that’s the case for someone like me, it didn’t mean that “Ultu Ulla” wasn’t enjoyable. I was quite fond of a lot of Rings of Saturn’s set of skills on each of the instruments. Instead of having just the option of putting a collection of songs together to make up an album, Rings of Saturn could’ve easily turned “Ultu Ulla” into a more conceptual LP, where all the songs kind of coupled with each other as a whole, whether there be a story or not. If there was a continuing progression and fluid approach between all the tracks on the record, with perhaps, the ability to have the songs feel as though they’re all connected with each other, it could easily be a much more praiseworthy release.
Get your copy of Ultu Ulla here!