Whenever I’m looking at some instrumental album or band, the chances are that the genre in question is rock. Particularly psychedelic rock given how well it translates without any vocals, but I’m always open to switching it up a bit. Heavy metal has long been something that the vocals were the real centerpiece of any band of the style unless they’re relying on a different gimmick. Coming across an instrumental heavy metal act is such a strange idea, yet Pragmatic Chaos makes into a terrific product.
At first, I didn’t realize that the trio that is Pragmatic Chaos was instrumental as I was simply drawn in by that cover art and nothing else. So, I waited… and waited… and waited for the vocals to eventually come along before I finally had the brains to go and do not even ten seconds of reading to find out “Ars Nova” doesn’t have a single lyric to it. It’s something that I have never seen before even though I’m sure it’s far from a new idea, and it really opens up what has the potential to be a whole new world. In every sense, Pragmatic Chaos really knows how to rely on classy riffage with a tantalizing sense of musicianship that really grabs you by the throat without letting go. And while I’d love to sit here and tell you that “Ars Nova” continues to keep you guessing with one track after another delivering something new, I simply can’t be this EP has but two tracks to call its own and even then they don’t bring anything earth-shatteringly new to the table for heavy metal. Yet, the energy and power that’s on full display with “Ars Nova” is still delicious and makes for one hell of a great listen no matter what angle you look at it from, and it allows for this simple pair of tracks to make me put them on repeat for hours.
Heavy metal has long been a style that has gripped the attention of many and has convinced more to take the style to new heights and territories, but sometimes all you need is the simplest of tweaks to make something feel new and refreshing. That’s the exact premise of what Pragmatic Chaos has done here and if “Ars Nova” is but a prelude to the kind of material we’re to get in the future then I’m completely on board for whatever Pragmatic Chaos throws our way next.
LISTEN to “Ars Nova” on Bandcamp here.
LIKE Pragmatic Chaos on Facebook here.