Echidna - Dawn of the Sociopath

After a relatively promising debut release in the form of 'Insidious Awakening', Portuguese thrashers Echidna return three years later with follow up 'Dawn of the Sociopath'. Sadly, as compared to their first effort, the second outing feels to be more of the same material recycled, with the band's drawbacks all the more audible to hear. 
One particular fall point for Echidna is their overuse of "crunching" guitar notes; a common issue in much of modern extreme metal. A poor influence from metalcore, this style offers little but a restricting twang of mediocre riffs that sit out of place with the freer side of death and thrash metal.
Add to this the use of low-pitched squeals from new frontman Bruno Capela, who doesn't sound too different from predecessor Pedro Fonseca, and the end result is a record that is both repetitive and arduous on the ears. 
Audiences expecting Echidna to build up on their stronger points, if not expand into more interesting musical terrain, will be disappointed with this release. (4/10)

Ann Sulaiman