One of the few death metal bands I actually care about nowadays, the UK’s Mithras combines a intricate approach with delightfully otherworldly lead work that helps to separate them from the hordes of other ultra-technical acts out there. Having released their last full-length back in 2007, the band has apparently decided to break the silence with this short EP. Time Never Lasts consists of only two new tracks and three live recordings, but hey, at least it’s something.
Like most of Mithras’s music, the two new tracks are veritable riff storms that should humble any aspiring guitarist. Their sound reminds me a lot of technical death metal masters Necrophagist, except Mithras’s riffs and use of harmonies give their music a slightly more melodic tinge. Both bands do seem to prefer their death metal to sound borderline robotic, with crunchy, rapid-fire guitars dominating the sound and machine-like drums lurking in the background.
The opener ‘Time Never Lasts’ starts off slow and subdued but builds in intensity to a bludgeoning conclusion, and features a nice slab of Mithras’s signature spacey, reverby lead work in the second half of the song. ‘Inside the Godmind’ starts off with a cool Twilight Zone-like riff before launching into a blisteringly intense riff-fest. The band serves up a slow, grinding section in the middle before spewing forth another storm of brutality to close the track. And while I’m not big into live recordings, Mithras’s selections on this EP at least give you an idea of how ridiculous these guys must be in the flesh - the incredible musicianship and mind-blowing speed of the songs performed shows that there is little drop off when porting the music to a live environment. True fans who are rabid for some new Mithras material will find themselves at least temporarily satisfied with this release.