This is the debut album from California-based trio Interloper who comprise Miles Dimitri Baker (ex-Rings of Saturn, ex-Ænimus), Aaron Stechauner (ex-Rings of Saturn, ex-Abiotic) and Andrew Virrueta (ex-Sea of Skies, Vampire Squid. Interestingly, when one looks on the web, this band are described somewhat differently on different sites as while they are a metal act, they don’t fit in any of the nice pigeonholes. Personally, I would describe them as melodic thrash with some metalcore, which means they are probably too clean and nice for old school thrashers while being way too heavy and dramatic for the melodic crowd. They also commit what is for me the ultimate sin in any type of music, let alone metal, in that they fade out on “Dreamlands”, then fade into the next one, “Drift”!

Vocals can be gruff and coarse with a real edge, or they can be sweet, which sounds somewhat strange given the maelstrom being created by the guitars. The band has been around in one form or another since 2014, releasing singles and then an EP in 2021, not long before this album. What they do is certainly very polished and all credit to the band and Andrew’s brother Joey, as together they did a good job on the production. It is just that for me, musically this is quite confused in the mixing of genres, so much so that by the end of playing it I still wasn’t sure. What I do know, is I have never heard a metal band close out an album by playing Duran Duran, and “Rio” doesn’t really work, although they do try hard (but it feels more sanitized than the original!). Metalheads are going to be somewhat polarised on this one, and there is no doubt that it needs to be heard before purchase.

Rating: 6/10