Saturday, March 27, 2010

A couple more maybe

Abscess - Dawn of Inhumanity: After the first track or so, the best thing about this might be the album art. Robed creatures carrying a giant eyeball through the desert with pyramids in the background and rising or setting sun throwing rays. Black, red and white. Pretty badass. Music itself isn't that bad. Standard mid-tempo death metal. Some "noisy" parts and absolute atrocious vocals. Y-grade horror flick monster vocals. Most of the time it doesn't even sound like words. Just deranged shouting. I'll listen to the whole thing because I have nothing better to do but I think it sucks pretty bad. Wicked cover art though! As the album goes on there is some faster tunes and some slower ones but the horrible vocals ruin it all anyway.


Can you tell I'm bored tonight?

Nominon - Monumentomb: Um, black/death metal. Buzzy guitars. Screechy vocals. Evil sounding. Nothing overwhelming. However, I am listening to it on $2 portable speakers. Not the best for accurate portrayal of sound. Vocals are discernable if you pay attention though, so that's a bonus.

Teitanblood - Seven Chalices: This is not starting out well. Guitars sound like a hive of bees. Drums are tinny and too high in the mix. The lead guitar sounds like noise. The vocals sound like a demon hound on 2 packs a day with too much echo effect on it. If I was stoned, I'd either freak the fuck out and go catatonic, or throw up. I don't know how much more I can take. Fuck me with an ice auger this is terrible. Track 4 and I'm out.

The Wounded Kings - The Shadow Over Atlantis: 2:30 in and I wish I had some weed. Slow and heavy with wispy clean singing. This would put me into a fucking trance if I was high. Shit. Pretty much the same all the way through. Relaxing. Chill out tunes for metalheads.

More quick thoughts

Destinity - XI Reason to See: This started out pretty promising. Cool epic metal. Reminded me of Amon Amarth and Ex Deo. Impressive vocals, a little atmospheric. But somewhere around the halfway mark they morphed into an almost death/metalcore band. The vocals changed, the atmospherics faded, the whole feel of the album dissolved. Quite disappointing. It was still pretty decent. It didn't sound entirely generic. I'd feel different about it if it were two separate bands. I hope on their next release they just stick with the first half of XI Reasons to See.

Ludicra - The Tenant: Another stab at trying to enjoy black metal. I don't know why I am forcing a genre I generally don't enjoy on myself but sometimes a band will resonate with me. Now while Ludicra is not "OH WOW"-ing me, I actually hit Play again when it was finished. I suppose it's not traditional black metal but vocally it follows pretty close. It's not 100% balls to the wall atonal kick in the face. There is some colour. Yeah, it has it's moments of bleak-neck speed but it also has groove. The female vocals add some allure as well. I can see this one sticking around on my playlist for a little while should I be in the mood.

Mouth of the Architect - The Violence Beneath EP:  It starts out violent enough. The vocals remain kinda violent. But if there is more beneath, well, it's sorta staying there. Maybe I listen to too much music or something but I feel I've heard this before. Bellowed vocals, softer instrumental passages, tinkling guitar. Some softer vocals are present as well but all in all it lacks the oomph that I like to hear most of the time. There was a time I would have been all over this but that time is gone. I prefer my violence in the forefront.


Friday, March 26, 2010

Short words on recent ear torture

Armored Saint - La Raza: Weak. With John Bush's vocals I kept expecting it to be as good as Anthrax but it wasn't even close. Don't care if I ever hear it again.

Carnifex - Hell Choose Me: zzzzzz Oh sorry. Did I fall asleep? It must have been the generic deathcore crap. (I literally laid down and had a nap during a Chimaira show once. 1st SOTU Tour)

Chaos Invocation - In Bloodline With The Snake: This sucks ass. I am trying to get into black metal but this isn't helping. The vocals are just so terrible. So, so, terrible. Even for black metal vocals.

Tuesday, March 23, 2010

Fear Factory - Mechanize

I have to admit that going into this I was pretty skeptical. I haven't been fond of any FF work sans Dino. So with Dino back in the fold, my skepticism should be unfounded. And it is. Mechanize is a killer album! Instead of just making me nostalgic for old FF, it stands on its own as one of their greatest works. I could care less about Christian Old-Wolbers, but I wish Ray Herrera could have been a part of this. But if you are going to replace the speed and precision of Mr. Herrera, it might as well be the one and only Gene Hoglan. He's a machine. Which fits well with the whole Fear Factory modus operandi. In my opinion, bassist Byron Stroud didn't have very big shoes to fill. Should FF have a full scale reunion (which I don't believe is necessary now), Christian would have to step up his game.
Speaking of game, Burton Bell sounds like he's at the top of his. As one of the progenitors of the clean/not clean vocal style, he is still head and shoulders above much of the competition. I'm actually having a hard time thinking of someone who does it better. Especially within the context of the music and content. Music and vocals meld to paint a picture on the mind. The clean vocals are like the human survivor amidst the machine destruction.
I know it's early in the year but Mechanize is leading the playcount of 2010 releases by a WIDE margin. Ahead of High on Fire if you can believe it. Tracks like "Mechanize", "Powershifter", "Christploitation" and phenomenal closer "Final Exit" beg to be heard over and over again. Nothing Fear Factory releases will ever live up to the status Demanufacture has achieved. Not because it's THAT much better but because it was their breakthrough album and it changed the course of industrial metal. Mechanize will never be seen as an equal to that album but history could prove it to be FF's second best.
P.S. Like Deftones did with....that guy, and Clutch (briefly) did with Mick Shauer, Fear Factory should just make Rhys Fulber a full-time member of the band. Dude has a golden touch.

Saturday, March 6, 2010

Random thoughts on some stuff I've heard lately

Impetuous Ritual - Relentless Execution of the Ceremonial Excrescence: Dark atmospheric doom. Best heard in complete darkness. And only 2 songs over 4 minutes in length! That's weird for doom.

Hysterica - Metalwar: Their image is better than the music. A bunch of chicks in leather and spikes and armour, bearing swords. Pretty straightforward metal. Only heard it once and most of it was from another room. I'll get back to it.

Melt Banana - initial t.: The whole thing is just under 5.5 minutes. And what a great 5.5 minutes. Some pretty sweet riffs make an appearance. And the high-pitched Japanese chick vocals are pretty fun.

Overkill - Ironbound: This is the first Overkill record I've ever heard. (Sue me.) And it's pretty good. Musically they remind me of Megadeth. Lots of speed and dexterity. Vocally I feel NWOBHM. It's okay.

The Resurrection Sorrow - Hour of the Wolf: Um, it came off as kinda weak and unnecessary. No desire to hear it again.

Rotting Christ - AEALO: First experience with Rotting Christ. Interesting. Not exactly stereotypical metal but the worldly elements make it interesting. I have a feeling this one could really grow on me.

Six Feet Under - Graveyard Classics 3: I didn't even make it past the first song. I have better things to listen to.

Arsis - Starve For the Devil: WTF?

Barn Burner - Bangers: Fuck yes!! Rockin' stoner vibe. Serious party tunes. And AMAZING live!

Charred Walls of the Damned - Charred Walls of the Damned: NOT a Ripper Owns fan.

Deiphago - Filipino Antichrist: Sucks hard.

haarp - ep ii: I love it. It sounds like your local death metal band but for some reason, I don't think it sucks.