Review: Stargazer – Tui La (2017)

If you are reading this as a fan of Stargazer, then yes, here is your dream come true! A brand new album that is releasing on the 18th of August titled Tui La. Stargazer, except for a recent music video for the track “Temple of Solace”, and “The Dream Electric” which is on Stargazer’s Facebook page, hasn’t had music put out into the scene since their 2013 EP Genesis. While that EP was excellent, this album is something else, and, that something else is absolutely fantastic. Here’s a bio from the band themselves to tell you what to know about them!

Band Bio

Forged in the steel city of Bethlehem, Pennsylvania, the progressive metal outfit known as Stargazer has been trying to push the boundaries of music and of self for half a decade. Through the central themes of self-actualization, introspection, and personal growth, the 5-piece band aims to paint a diverse landscape of musical emotion, from quick and aggressive melodic lines and odd time signatures to slow and lumbering grooves laced with haunting vocal drones and harmonies. Lyrical topics on the effects of different states of mental health, creation and destruction, and a fascination with the exploration of the human psyche add a not-so-standard twist to the progressive genre and provide an avenue for band and fans to connect more wholly within the complete musical package. As the years have passed, so too have the members and influences of the band, until finally arriving at the current apex of dedication, motivation, and discipline in regards to their craft as musicians, entrepreneurs, and best friends. No longer concerned with trendiness or “fitting in” adrift a vast musical sea of copycats and lookalikes, they strive to communicate a message of beginning to accept one’s self for who one is, and reflect that mantra in their music. Unapologetically nerdy and a little out of left field, each member injects his own unique musical inspiration into every song, resulting in music with solid foundation that can live and breathe all on its own. Stargazer has begun to infect the east coast with their brand of out-of-the-box, free-thinking metal, winning over fans from multiple facets of the metal scene and uniting them under the banner of brotherhood and camaraderie. With a handful of tours under their belt, they have only become hungrier and more driven to see the sweet fruits of their labor, to travel and behold the diverse beauty of the world we live in, to increase their musical skill and sphere of influence, and to connect with every person they meet on a genuine, meaningful level. The five members of Stargazer have a need to learn and to grow, and in their travels hope to further their own human experience as they continuously blossom into their future selves.

Stargazer’s newest album Tui La takes you on a journey through some nice prog tones mixed in with some smooth yet melodious ragged vocals. What this album also does that is absolutely wonderful, at least one of the many things it does, is that they use a sense of atmosphere that simply let’s you drift away into a beautifully constructed instrumental, only to be then thrown into the fray of intense lyricism and impactful riffs and drum patterns that convey narratives that seem to just flow with each track.

Album Pros

As I have stated earlier in this article, this album plays well with lyricism, and, instrumentally, it’s so intense but steady all within the same spectrum. You also get some absolutely stellar and unique vocals, not to mention with the screams, the emotion in the screams is something that was definitely vibrant and painted you a picture that showed both harsh yet elegant qualities of the tracks within Tui La. The album plays well also on atmosphere. As you’ll listen to this album, you’ll hear many instances of some beginning sounds that seem to set you up for something is more crazy and great, and it definitely does!

Album Cons

Honestly, there isn’t really anything I’m finding bad within this album. As a personal want, I’d wished they put more tracks on the album, instead of just 9, because I want to hear more from Stargazer, as I’m sure their fans want to as well. Other than that, again, I just don’t really see anything in a negative view of this album. I think this was all well mixed and well produced.

Final Verdict

With all that this album has brought to the table, I’d definitely say that this album is a highlight of music that’s releasing in August of 2017. Fans of Stargazer, you will not be disappointed. If you are reading this and have not listened to Stargazer, first, check out their EP, then dive into the Tui La August 18th!

Track List

1. Tui

2. Skinwalker

3. Wobigon

4. Temple of Solace

5. Satellite

6. Colorfly

7. Uncertainty Principle

8. The Dream Electric

9. La

Score: 9/10

Favorite Tracks: Temple of Solace, Tui, and Kata ana

Special thanks to Famined Records and Stargazer for letting me review this album! It was an absolute joy to listen to!