Album Review: Burn – Messora

Band: Messora

Album: Burn

Label: Independent

Release Date: December 02, 2022

Genre: Progressive Death Metal

Location: Canada

Back in December 2019, I completed a review of Messora’s debut album The Door, and was completely blown away by the musicianship and diversity of the album. So much so that I gave it a 4.5/5 rating and a couple of years later I still stick by that. At the end of my review, I implored them to release another album, and, well… here we are with the release of Burn.

Will this bring everything that I hoped for and more or do I sit here listening to this new release with sorrow in my heart and disappointment etched on my face? Well, OMFG, I’m here to tell you that Burn is the whole enchilada, shebang, and any other superlative you can come up with. What a damn fine listen.

Originally formed as a solo studio project in 2016 by Canadian Mr. Zach Dean, Messora hasn’t been overwhelming the metal world with release after release, but they have released two excellent albums and a single, “Forever as I Beg,” in early 2022. There is also an official lyric video titled “The Door” which was released back in 2020. So go and check them out because you won’t be disappointed.

There’s so much to unpack musically that I’m finding it problematic to give you an overall category for Burn, so let’s start with the obvious. What we have is nine tracks with a run time of around forty minutes but once you press play, time seems to just fade away as you’re taken on this imposing journey. It’s atmospheric, ominous, and moody. It also ebbs and flows through varying degrees of darkness with its progressive and mesmerizing bass lines combined with crushing riffs bringing bursts of light. 

The lyrics are simple although amazingly effective as they deliver the stories portrayed with hellish vocals providing the perfect delivery tool. The following lyric from “Respite” gives you a pretty good idea of how menacing and ominous the lyrical content can be: 

“A fire, A tempest, An ending calling, 

A darkness, A respite, 

A silent barren place” 

Stand-out tracks? Well, see that’s hard to do ‘cause each carries the other like chapters in a book, and to single them out might ruin the story but here are a few that made me repeatedly go back for further listening: 

“Respite” and “Calling” bring more of the progressive side. Think of a demon spawn child of Opeth and Alkaloid with stunningly beautiful guitar work combined with hauntingly clean singing. “Burn” is more of a death metal-themed track that’s so heavy your joints are crushed by the sheer weight of it. “Ashes” begins as a quiet spoken word track but then morphs into a frenzy of deathly vocal growls mixed with gigantic brutal riffs, and closing track “Winter” is an absolute platform showcasing every one of Messora’s exceptional musical talents. 

So, did I get my wish? You fuckin better believe it! Messora has taken their debut album and expanded, molded, and developed Burn into something that is somehow darker and more sinister, further highlighting that the band is evolving into geniuses of their craft. 

The album will be out December 2nd, so set the date with a loud alarm for 12:01 and get yourself a copy. You will not regret it. 

4.5/5

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