Dustin Behm — The Beyond
(Rockshots, 2018, CD)
by Henry Schneider, Published 2018-03-14
Metal guitar shredder Dustin Behm has been honing his skills since the age of 13 as lead guitarist for Portland’s instrumental progressive metal band Increate. When Portland was snowed in a year ago, Dustin took the opportunity to create the music for his first solo album, which he then recorded in the spring and summer of 2017. The result is The Beyond, the answer to the burning questions of how many guitar notes can you play in one second? How long can you play at this intensity without burning out? Is it possible to have 46 minutes of musical sound and fury with basically one technique? I tried extremely hard to give this album its fair shake. The first two tracks impart a sense of helplessness and horror that match the cover art and Dustin’s love of 70s / 80s European horror movies. But then the album becomes a horror itself. 46 minutes of unrelenting machine gun drumming and non-stop rapid fire guitar shredding! It is so frenetic and mind numbing that you just shut down and find it impossible to detect any nuances or differences between any of the instrumentals. It all begs the question, who is the audience for this aural sludge? Drugged out drones? Zombies? Amazingly, after 46 minutes, the intrepid listener can come up for air and bask in the nearly ambient and melodic “Towers of Glass,” which is so radically different from all the other tracks you wonder if it was included by mistake and is actually by a different artist and belongs on a different album.
Related artist(s): Dustin Behm
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