Prepare yourself for an all-out sensual assault with the beautifully intense sound of progressive rock meets melodic death metal from Maryland newcomers Senescere.
Originally formed back in 2015 as a solo project of Alden Bradstock, it has evolved into a full-blown band ready to drop its debut album on us five years later.
Our first taste of this was debut single The Low Clouds, which opens up with a darting high-pitched guitar lick that drops into a stabbing riff then a huge scream welcomes the high-pitched guitars once more.
Guttural screamed vocals take over in a verse driven forward by pounding drums then a cool darting riff leads into a laid-back melodic section of atmospheric vocals “Feel your hand in mine, Skin where glass once was, A frozen knife disappears, Frosted window into future life, Warms and clears.”
That ends with a big scream and heavier guitars that lead us back into another smash of screamed vocals, delicious guitars and pounding drums. Then a cool section of repeating guitar chords drop into another lighter, melodic section.
Light vocals come in under light guitars and suddenly dive into a cool guitar lick over driving drums before more gruff vocals bring the track to a heavier ending. Check it out in the video below:
That was followed up with the release of Resonate last month, which opens up with stabbing guitars then fun high-pitched guitars lead into an intense opening verse. That feeds into a chorus of gruff vocals answered by little twists of high-pitched guitar, then drops into a light guitar lick and a chilled melodic section.
It builds into a big technical guitar solo that drops into intense spinning guitars under growled vocals. Then a brief guitar lick feeds into a heavier chorus that brings the track to a close. Check it out in the video below:
We had a chat with Alden to find out more about this exciting new band. Read on below…
GR: Who are Senescere? And where are you from? What’s the backstory, how did you get together?
AB: “Senescere is based out of Maryland and began as a solo project of mine in 2015. Since then it has evolved into a metal / progressive band with other musicians contributing and helping out on the songs.
“The first album I put out under this name was actually an instrumental acoustic album, which is still available for free on our Bandcamp page, but in 2016 I began writing a follow up with more of a rock and metal style and the music became increasingly heavier as the songwriting progressed.
“For the new album, I asked a couple of really talented friends of mine to help out on the recordings – my friend Andy Stark composed and performed drums, and bandmates from the other group I play in, Seventh Seal, also helped out. Nathan Heavel recorded bass and Josh Clark performed some additional vocals, co-produced the album with me and mixed all of the songs at his place called Dark Hollow Studio.”
You just released The Low Clouds. What should people be expecting from the song? What inspired you to write it?
S: “The Low Clouds is our first single and I think it’s a good overall introductory to what we’re doing. My goal with this music has always been to convey a deeper emotion under the surface of the riffs and the layers.
“The song is a self-contained story about trying to come back to life after mentally and emotionally locking yourself away, but also I’d tell listeners to view it as a small piece to the bigger story that the rest of the album conveys. There are a lot of metaphors in the lyrics, they’re very personal for me and written in sort of a cryptic way that could maybe have different meaning for different people.”
GR: How would you describe your sound to people that haven’t listened to you yet?
AB: “Our sound has some ups and downs in the tone, some intense moments as well as calm and melodic breaks. Because of the growling vocals, I’d say we definitely ride a line near melodic death metal in style. Listeners should expect intense drumming, heavy bass and melodic distorted guitar lines, but there’s often more delicate and fragile moments as well. There are plenty of dynamics and we don’t aim for non-stop shredding, crazy heavy music.
GR: What influences you to write music? Any key themes or topics that you write about?
AB: “There is one key theme that I write about consistently, and that is grief and loss. Senescere started as an outlet for some of the most intense feelings I’ve experienced. I think it can definitely seem a bit cliché in metal to always write about sad things, but at the same time I think there can be good and bad in every situation. If it’s coming from the heart then there could be an almost limitless amount of perspectives to address.
“This new album is specifically about dealing with grief in sort of an irresponsible way. Shutting yourself off, not letting yourself heal with time, or not even wanting to heal at all. Your old life was taken and you want it back so badly that you create a sort of false reality in your own head to run from the pain. It’s dangerous and unhealthy, and something that I have some firsthand experience with. Grief has touched my life to a significant degree that I can’t ignore or downplay, and often the most healing and productive thing for me to do is to put those feelings into my music.
GR: Which bands/musicians are/have been your strongest musical influences?
AB: “My biggest musical influences are bands like Dark Tranquillity, Katatonia, Amorphis, and Opeth. Dark Tranquillity in particular is my favorite band, and Mikael Stanne is probably my biggest vocal inspiration.
“Opeth’s early to mid-career albums like My Arms Your Hearse and Ghost Reveries taught me how to write and appreciate unconventional song structures. In Flames’ early albums like Whoracle and Colony were my first introduction to more extreme styles of metal.
“Also, when I discovered Devin Townsend around 2006, he totally changed my perspective of heavy music. It felt like each album was a piece of him that he was cutting out for his listeners to experience, instead of just a random collection of songs. His Terria album is still one of the most inspiring pieces of music I could name and it’s probably in my top 5 albums of all time.
“The cool thing is that everyone who is working on Senescere with me has different inspirations. I know Andy really digs into more prog oriented bands, and you can hear that in his drumming. He definitely doesn’t focus on just doing traditional metal drums and arrangements. It creates a much more unique vibe having someone bring different styles and ideas to the table.”
GR: What have you got coming up as we move into 2020?
AB: “Going into 2020 it’s all about releasing this new album, and putting out music videos and promotional material for it to try and get the word out. The album is titled Alive But Somewhere Else and I expect it will be released in full around March.
“Leading up to that we’re going to be putting out videos for almost every song, and a few of the songs will be available for early download and to stream on Spotify, etc. As I write this I’m getting ready to put out the next track, which is titled Resonate, and then it’s on to editing another music video that we filmed last week, so there’s a lot of work to be done.
“I do have some early ideas for the next album, but I’ll probably wait until this release is behind me before I really get into that.”
GR: Anything else you’d like people to know about you/your music?
AB: “Just that we’re an independent band striving to create dynamic, honest and creative heavy music. We don’t really care about trends and genres, we’re not trying to be the next hot thing that no one saw coming. I value the album format and I want to create an experience and tell a story with these songs, and we truly appreciate anyone listening or checking us out.”