GLOBAL DOMINATION

IS DEAD

Audio Autopsy – October 2009

Audio Autopsy – October 2009

01/10/09  ||  Global Domination

Shining: VI Klagopsalmer Shining: VI Klagopsalmer

7.5/10

Lord K: I always thought that Shining was a trve,
grim and necro band, but nope. It surprised me the first time I heard
them a few years back since it sounded nothing like I expected it to.
That’s a good thing. There’s more melody, black metal atmosphere
and catchy riffs to this than one would think. That’s also a good
thing. Still they are not completely for me, blame it on the lack of
aggression, feeling and memorable tunes. 5

Kampfar: Suicide is great and so is Shining. I also enjoy me a smoothie. 9

The Duff: Unfairly, I stayed away from this band
because of the frontman’s outspoken views on life and how it should be
led; “VI” makes me want to compensate for lost time, as I consider this
to be goddamn fucking awesome. I’ve been told that this isn’t much like
other Shining records, the songwriting having been toned down and maybe
scaled back in greatness – I still feel like I’m being coated in goddamn
beautiful nihil. This is like a mix of punk-influenced Darkthrone, the
dark, swirling masses of the coolest of the cool modern day black metal
bands like Leviathan and Deathspell Omega mixed and a Viking vibe. By
far the biggest and bestest (I know that’s not a word… it’s my
sensationalism bursting forth into your eyes) of this AA edition, it
shits all over everything, basically by also being one of 2009’s most
straightforward yet simultaneously stimulating black metal releases;
quite the discovery. 8

Abyss: Since “The eerie cold” this band has upped
the stakes with each album for what constitutes black metal by mixing in
jazzy licks, meditative passages and actual dynamics. “Klagopsalmer”
seems to be a more coherent album than “Halmstad” but so far I prefer
the latter. I do think that “Klagopsalmer” might be a grower though,
since I recall not being instantly won over by “Halmstad” either at
first. 7

CadenZ: For every record, Kvarforth’s message gets
more and more refined and compressed, and on “Klagopsalmer” Shining have
reached a new level. There is nothing unimportant or trivial to be
found here, they’ve chipped away everything unnecessary and all that is
left is true essence and pure quality. The diversity is still present;
slow, repetitive and brooding sections mingle with groovy mid-tempo
pounding and blast beats. The lead guitarist is amazing, and both his
shredding and the jammy bluesy solos find their places on the record. By
Teh Illogical Rules Of Black Metal they should feel out of place, but
they don’t – and that’s because the songs are exceptionally
well-arranged and deal with tension-release, dissonance-harmony and the
flow of energy in a most organic and emotionally gratifying way. One of
this year’s top albums for sure. 9

Floodhorse (guest): The band name always makes me
think about some old, shirtless dude polishing his car, but I am
actually enjoying this. Sometimes things can drag out into monotony, but
I guess it’s supposed to be like that. We also get pretty inconsistent
production, but nothing annoying. For the most part this whole thing is
pretty good stuff. 7

Pantheon I: Worlds I create Pantheon I: Worlds I create

6.8/10

Lord K: Not completely shit, actually. One huge
problem though; the snare is triggered beyond all comprehension and is
more irritating than a blowjob with teeth. Doubtless, these guys are
very skilled musicians and their (somewhat) black metal is sounding
clean, thought out and… chaotic. They have the speed down, that’s for
sure, they also have some intriguing acoustic guitar work at times and
put together it makes for an interesting listen though ultimately it
falls short thanx to the… chaos. Not to mention the fucken snare. 4

Kampfar: Jon Espen Sagstad is from my town,
Kopervik exactly, and an arrogant twat he is. Still, the motherfucker
with a stiff upper lip is capable of making fine music. Or at least,
playing in bands doing such a thing – Trollfest of course not included,
but Sarkom is, though I know nothing about Abiotic. 7

The Duff: Sounds like standard black to me with
quite a tech element. Catchy despite being quite inaccessible, this
album has taken me aback with just how professional it is; the
musicianship, the production, the arrangements, all sounds good to these
ears. Hints of Borknagar, Enslaved and other atmospheric bands like
Burzum as well as more ferocious BM styles akin to Dark Funeral, folk
and classical backdrops. The slight death tinge sure helps wonders too.
I’m unlikely to pursue this band’s work from now into the future, but
for a fleeting listen this is very high grade and makes me wish I was in
my youth again feverishly seeking high and low for every new metal band
to walk the Earth. 8

Abyss: Norwegian black metal, can you dig it? Well,
when it sounds as well-crafted and intense as Pantheon I, definitely!
The similarities with 1349 are certainly there but since 1349 has soften
up their full-on attack sound I don’t see why Pantheon I shouldn’t be
allowed to exist. The production is hellaweird though. 6

CadenZ: Stunning melodic black metal. Dark, harsh,
beautiful. The subtle medieval touches with acoustic guitars and cello
do wonders with the atmosphere. I love the contrasts between the
Satyricon-esque melodic blastbeat sections and the soaring mid-tempo
stuff. The cello is used delicately and it really does add depth to the
texture. Pantheon I have taken the best parts of the black and
“blackish” metal genres and added their own flair to the mix – and it
works like hell! This is an amazing album with a thick, mystic and
diabolical atmosphere, the only minus it’ll get from me is for the
somewhat machine-like drum sound. Highly recommended disc – buy it. Now.
9

Floodhorse (guest): Ah, black metal. Seems like
they took Mother North and decided to make an album out of it, which
isn’t the worst that could happen. But as usual with black metal we get
lots of barely audible Velocity Boy blasting covered by an anonymous
carpet of guitars, which is rarely my thing. That being said, the
non-blasty stuff works pretty well, and there’s no denying that this is
quality shit. The snare sounds horrible, though. One point gets added
due to the band being from Norway, and for the chick playing cello. Nice
touch. 7

Vader: Necropolis Vader: Necropolis

6.8/10

Lord K: Even when Vader’s at their lowest they
still shit out A-league death metal, which unfortunately sound devoid of
identity at times. It feels like they play death metal for the sake of
playing death metal, without much heart going into it. There are
standard death metal riffs and songs that just appear without making much of an impression. They are there just becoz they should
be there, if you know what I mean. “Necropolis” is no exception. You
know what you get when you pay a 10 dollar whore for an anal excursion.
Hint: not limousines, cocaine and the best looking broad in the world.
Much like with Vader. I don’t even know what that means. Not the best
Vader album, but still full-on quality. Peter and c/o (do you even know
who’s in the band nowadays except for Peter? Me neither…) might have
been considered the biggest death metal act out of Poland in the past,
but truth is that they are quite far behind both Behemoth and
Decapitated these days. 7

Kampfar: Darth Vader has some peculiar lung-disease
but Vader keeps on without dysfunction. Hail war, but fuck Star Wars
and that dildo Skywanker. And of course, I’d like to throat-fuck
Princess Leia. 8

The Duff: Vader doing Vader; I was close to
sickened by how average “Impressions in Blood” was, so thankfully this
sees the band returning to, at the very least, the quality of
“Revelations”, although no cuts that remind me of the glory years as
with the aforementioned. Well, they’ve been going for a quarter of a
century, I dunno what I should be expecting. I was all excited with the
inclusion of Vogg too, but in the end I hear nothing of his work here
(maybe he played no part in the recording) unless it’s “The Seal”
instrumental which sounds like “The Calling” off “The Negation”; doesn’t
matter much, Peter is an exceptional guitar player, and the replacement
musicians he’s recruited perform commendably. Of the Polish
triple-assault-mega-blast-team-supreme, though, only Decapitated remain
unblemished after the sub-par “Evangelion”. 7

Abyss: I’ve tried and I’ve tried but I guess I have
to face it, Behemoth has beaten Vader to the crown of “Best Polish
death metal sausage/album of 2009”. You can tell that Peter’s been
pretty much on his own this time because “Necropolis” is lacking a
certain something, even though I’m sure the actual number of songs
written by him alone is more or less the same compared to older albums.
Compared to “Impressions in blood”, “Necropolis” is a disappointment,
but Vader are still among the best bands in this month’s shitfest. 7

CadenZ: Like FedEx, Vader always delivers. Like
FedEx, you always know what you get. Like FedEx, it gets less and less
exciting with time – unless they bring you something extraordinary,
which keeps up your interest for a longer period of time. Unfortunately
that doesn’t happen very often. Still, you’re happy you got the
delivery. Especially from the new drummer. 6

Floodhorse (guest): Oh, Piotr Wiwczarek, what has
happened? I thought Vader was done for when Doc was replaced, and
judging from “The Beast”, I was right on the money. They did however
regain some of their lost quality as Daray matured a bit. Then BOOM,
like a strike of lightning the foundation of Vader was once again
suddenly removed, and Piotr was the sole survivor. I actually had some
hope of Vader once again ruling supreme when it was once again a Piotr
dictatorship like in the good old days, and without Daray’s ever
increasingly synthetic drum sound. What we get instead is a pretty
uninspired album consisting of mostly standard chainsaw riffs alternated
with sped up SFU riffs backed by solid but
boring drumming sounding as natural as silicone tits. It’s not a bad
album, but compared to what they used to record back in the day, it’s
far from spectacular. 6

Witchbreed: Heretic rapture Witchbreed: Heretic rapture

5.7/10

Lord K: Read the review and then read the fantastic interview.
Now you should understand that Witchbreed is a hella lot better than
what you’d ever give them credit for. Easily the winner in this edition
for me. It’s not like they had a hard time becoming champions either…
Look at the fucken competition. I am proud to admit I believe in witches
from now on. 8

Kampfar: Humanity is the worst cuntbreed indeed. 4

The Duff: I just disconnect as soon as I hear
female vocals in metal these days, not the case with Witchbreed ‘cos,
shitthankfuckingchrist, there are some riffs. And not just any riffs,
but the kind of riffs I like to write myself. This means there is a
market for my tastes out there, and I’m one step closer to selling my
music for a sustainable career as well as launching my “Midgets dressed
as Noah’s Ark creatures with Devil horns getting fucked with 18th
century romantic-era chandeliers” porn site. It’s not all three-foot
four women being spit-roasted by candle wax, though; the guitar tone is
formidable, the vocals equally so, but there are the regular drab
segments I’m all too familiar with when dealing with “fairer sex metal”.
Yeah, not to sound sexist… wait for it… but they seem to drag about
such tepid garbage around with them as with the smell of the sea, not
that I object to the latter. I hit harder than slam-fucking-death,
motherfucker. 6

Abyss: Chick-fronted metal band which hates Moonspell and sounds alright. Vocalissa Ruby seems like a cool gal, judging from our fabulous interview
but I still don’t get the jizz-in-pants feeling K seems to experience.
It’s nothing horribly wrong with Witchbreed, but they just don’t tickle
my goat. 6

CadenZ: Some kind of melancholic metal with female
vocals, which sound really good most of the time. My hyper-sensitive
SatanSensors™ detect some Opeth influences, which are cool. “Heretic
Rapture” offers nothing mind-blowing, but at least it doesn’t suck. 5

Floodhorse (guest): Female vocals can be a
beautiful thing. It can also be a rectal pain. This time it’s a little
bit of both, and we all know those two can not be mixed with any great
deal of success. When I listen to this, I often get an image in my head
of a very feminine man singing, which is maybe the worst scenario
possible. Sometimes it works, but not quite often enough. Then there’s
the production. Overall it struck me at first as being very good, until
the fills started coming. As long as the drummer keeps it relatively
slow, everything is fun and games. If things starts speeding up; look
out Fred Estby, your lost twin is in town. I am not giving up this album
just yet, but right off the bat it’s no more than a: 5

Megadeth: Endgame Megadeth: Endgame

5.7/10

Lord K: Lars Ulrich’s and Kerry King’s best friend
is back with another crap effort as if his online shit ramblings weren’t
enough. There is a reason Megadeth were always viewed upon as an act
never good enough to achieve cult status like The Big 3. There is no Big
4, you know. Never were. I don’t care if Dave can play guitar, when you
can’t compose songs, you are fucked anyways. And to put more
salt into the wounds, it’s not like his voice has become fantastic all
of a sudden. Dave Mustaine is a fucken idiot and I loathe the guy. The
music also helps to fuel that hatred, though Megadeth’s definitely
sounded worse. By the way, isn’t it weird how the good guys like Dimebag
and the likes fall victim to absolute psychopaths, and people like Dave
Mustaine still walk the Earth? Do I wish Dave death upon God’s Mighty
Solder Dave Mustaine? Nah, but I’ll gladly let someone sew his fucken
mouth shut, put him in a padded cell with nothing but pictures of Lars
and Kerry to brighten up his day. Oh, he could also have the 2 latest
Metallica albums play repeatedly. 4

Kampfar: A decent effort on all fronts minus the
vocals. Mr. Insane always had shit vocals, no question about it,
although in the past he at least had some proper desperation boiling in
those pipes of his. Still, better than the last Metallica this. 6

The Duff: Really, I heard the first track and
thought this would without doubt be the first Megadeth album I’d buy for
a long time, but then on recent outings (the last two, to be precise),
there have always been some killer opening track. I tell a lie,
“Disconnect” was awesome too. Oh, yes, a naïve Dethhead you have here,
but I’ve grown out of admiring two of the big four for everything they
release ever since starting to grow hair around my nipples. That spells
M-A-N-L-E-Y, for your information. Whatever Dave’s opinion on those who
don’t think much to the new record, the truth is “Endgame” is not all
that fantastic. The best since either probably fuck, I dunno – all ‘Deth
albums since “Countdown to Extinction” have had their respective ups
and downs, but I view the band far more objectively these days and I see
this album as no different despite reports foretelling it’s fueling
metal’s resurgence. For once, Dave has also recruited someone who is far
too good for his band (maybe Glen Drover too could be included in this
category); Broderick would be put to far better use in Nevermore. Some
killer tracks no doubt, but overall still average; oh, and it kicks the
shit out of “Breasty Mantitties” (that seriously took me several hours
of brainstorming – I hope the payoff was worth it). 6

Abyss: Dave Mustaine doesn’t just have a chip on his shoulder, he has a fucking ship
on his shoulder, and no one suffers more from it than Dave Mustaine
(his bandmates not included). But if we take Metallica out of the
equation (oh, did I lose you there Dave? At least try to pretend that
you’re an independent human who’s happiness is NOT
reliant on two millionaires with shitty tattoos and balding heads)
Megadeth still wouldn’t be a good band. The occasional riff throughout
their career does not redeem the overall blandness of the albums.
Bottomline, Megadeth is still not making very interesting music. 5

CadenZ: A return to form? Not quite, but a step in
the right direction at least. Lots of shredding (new guitarist Broderick
has phenomenal chops!) and lots of fast “Rust in Peace”-era riffing.
Mustaine’s vocals aren’t the best on here, and the ballad “The Hardest
Part…” is sub-par. No hits, no catchiness, but overall better than
average songs. I guess that justifies a new Megadeth album. 6

Floodhorse (guest): David Mustaine has obviously
returned with a new Megadeth album. What’s most impressive about the man
is that he doesn’t seem to age at all. Not only does he look way
younger than his mortal enemies in Metallica, but these days he makes
music a hundred trillion times better too. His vengeance is complete,
because this new album beats the latest Metallica outputs easily. Let’s
face it, if he made anything worse than those abominations, it would be a
sign of the upcoming apocalypse. What we get is brilliant production,
good performances, good songs, and good quality all around. I always
knew bitterness was the best motivator in the world, and here is the
proof. 7

The Black Dahlia Murder: Deflorate The Black Dahlia Murder: Deflorate

5.2/10

Lord K: The cover art is ace and so not fitting the package. I dig that. TBDM’s
music is another story. They are another one of all these bands who
play fast, throw in blasts and can play with the best of them – but
still it sounds thin. That is an achievement of some sort. No
matter how much they try – it never comes across as the least brutal. It
might be becoz of the happy riffs on top of the blasts and 2-beats. And
once again the drums are triggered beyond all shit and that destroys
any album for me. This could have been so much better, bu tit’s not. 5

Kampfar: I’m able to hear that this bunch of
Americans know what they are doing but fail to enjoy their effort more
than not quite at all. 5

The Duff: I’m a very big TBDM
fan, and I’m not disappointed in this effort. The technicality has been
upped a notch, although in sacrificing some of the ongoing catchiness
of “Nocturnal”. There seems to be a return to the heavier barrage of
“Unhallowed”, but with the flare of later albums. New drummer Shannon
Lucas has really impressed me on this effort, having pulled out all the
stops, whereas with his debut appearance for the band I was underwhelmed
despite thinking he was getting the job done competently. Overall,
though, this is their weakest effort; not as gripping as “Miasma” or as
hook-laden as “Nocturnal”, I don’t agree on opinions floating around
that the tracks are indiscernible, but the quality is hackneyed, killer
tracks and the quite average meshed together to form nothing but a
satisfying whole. I also don’t think that ex-Arsis guitar player Ryan
Knight belongs in the band; he’s a gifted player, but his tone and
technique make me shut down for most of the time – not too enthralling,
the guy needs to shred with more balls and less of a predictable array
of techniques and phrasing; more spontaneity. 7

Abyss: Two cheers and a selleri stalk for the weird-as-fuck psychedelic cover. Inside I get what I’ve come to expect from TBDM,
which is nothing at all since this is a band I’ve heard but never paid
any attention to what so ever. Musically it’s death metal with a less
than fantastic vocalist, I don’t know, but he just rubs me the wrong
way. Kinda like the bandname. 6

CadenZ: According to dictionary.com, “deflorate”
means “past the flowering state; having shed its pollen”. OK, so a
“deflorate” person, is that kind of like a person in the
cuddling-after-sex-having-shed-my-pollen state? Well, in that case
they’ve managed to find the perfectly fitting name for this album –
‘cause usually I just fall asleep and don’t remember anything post-act,
just like with this record. Or I just get up, walk away and do something
else, just like with this record. Or I go for another round, just like
with… waaait. Austin, we have a glitch. 4

Floodhorse (guest): Oh man. Those high pitched
vocals are ruining this stuff pretty easily. Not that it’s in any way
mind blowing to begin with, but such strained vocals ruin it completely
for me. I had to check if the screams are performed by a woman, which
appears to not be the case. The weird thing is that this album could
have been much better without blasts. I drift away to a better,
blast-less place every time there is blasting going on, for some reason.
The dudes are obviously skilled, but the whole thing gives me nothing
but flaccidity and a headache, and who wants that? One extra point is
given for the track “I Will Return”. More of that next time, please. 4

Graveworm: Diabolical figures Graveworm: Diabolical figures

5/10

Lord K: I’m naming my next band Casketsnake and
then we’ll share rehearsal room with Graveworm. These absolute idiots
mix up some shitty growls with shitty black metal half-pig screams on
top of some shitty keyboard driven black metal music with shitty
melodies and a shitty production to boot. I’d rather have a shitty photo
session with Casketsnake than this. “Graveworm”… I mean, come ooon… 3

Kampfar: I often think about the worms of the God
but never again will I listen to Graveworm and their anemic mix of black
and death. Or whatever. 2

The Duff: Don’t know what the fuck is going on
here; five years ago, you’d listen to a band like Skyfire and think
“Sounds like Children of Bodom with a mixture of melodic death metal
styles; quite original”. They disband and, several years later, only
when they choose to reform, at least one copycat per AA in the past
half year appears after a period where you thought “Sheeeit; I wish
Skyfire would reunite and bring back they’re quite original style of
metal” – life is full of goddamn fucken irony, but this is not such a
case, just some plain ol’ suckage there for a band I thought never got
their due. Graveworm sound like “God Was Created”-era Vehemence, Skyfire
and some of the more melancholic, recent Dark Tranquillity efforts –
not a black metal band, as stated on their Wikipedia entry, even though
some of the synth borders the sub-genre; definitely more death-oriented.
Solid shit, for sure. 7

Abyss: This German (?) band obviously goes against the grain and want to sound like Cradle of Filth. What the fuck is up with that?? Other than that we get… oh, fuck if I care. Only RPG-playing
hobbit motherfuckers listen to Graveworm and pretend they like metal.
This statement is probably not true, but who cares, Graveworm still is
blander than bland. 5

CadenZ: Some Italian pseudo-harsh metal with
elements from black and goth. This is some mediocre shit most of the
time, but gleams of hope are to be discerned. The last two minutes of
“Hell’s Creation” for example are awesome, and some of the heavier stuff
like “Forlorn Hope” are reminiscent of Amon Amarth. I guess they don’t
suck as much as their name implies. 6

Floodhorse (guest): Getting bombarded with blasts
with half timed hi-hat hits is a crappy start. Once again we get a very
synthetic production, but it works pretty well with the music. The real
strong points of this are the vocals, which contain lots of gravel, and
the fantastic drum sound. The snare actually sounds like a snare, which
is rare these days. We also get lots of keyboards. When they follow the
“Seventh Son of a Seventh Son” formula, everything is fun and games,
but when they change to tivoli mode, things tend to be less golden.
Happy-go-lucky keyboard parts and hi-hat cheating aside, this was a nice
surprise, and it will get some more spins. I was on my way to fire up
an eight here, when suddenly the “Message In a Bottle” cover version
comes with toy guns blazing and easily removes a point. Way to gay it
up, people. 7

U.D.O: Dominator U.D.O: Dominator

4.5/10

Lord K: The German dwarf is back. I wish I could piss on this, and I mean piss
as in a waterfall-way-kinda-pissing. But you have to take it for what
it is – hardrock that has got its moments. Ridiculous lyrics, riffs made
by a 4th grader and Udo’s characteristic snarl on top of everything.
It’s ofcourse no classic album ala the ones we got from Accept back in
the day, but it’s ok hardrock. 5

Kampfar: I wrote some vicious things about Mr.
Dirkschneider some reviews back and he and his boys haven’t improved
since. But of course, if you are fan I guess this crapper won’t
disappoint. 3

The Duff: First I thought this was UFO,
the classic 1969 British rock band; realizing my mistake, it was but
three seconds in that I thought they might as well be. I’m not one to
rate this, because I find it unmoving and have no time for such. I’m
tired and grumpy, the “underpants scene” in “Alien” has just kicked in,
and I have yet to knock one out today. You know I’ll do it too for
calling it the “underpants scene” – Sigourney Weaver is hot, goddammit. 4

Abyss: The fact that Udo sounds more or less the
same as when he was in Accept doesn’t really say much since it’s not his
finesse and ability to hold a high note that’s made him famous. As for
songwriting I can’t really say there’s anything horrendously bad going
on but don’t expect me to put on anything from “Dominator” next time I’m
DJ:ing. 5

CadenZ: Nothing new under the sun, generic
traditional heavy metal in the Accept/Judas Priest-vein. Of course. A
muddy production and Udo’s annoying voice kill this record effectively
along with the song-writing, which is so boring I’m getting suicidal
here. Next, please. 3

Floodhorse (guest): Yes! The man has been around
forever, and the quality is still holding up impressively well. The
first impression is that it sounds pretty generic, extremely predictable
and at times brilliant. It’s sort of a slowed down version of Primal
Fear with better songs, better vocals and less homosexuality. There is
enough cheese present to make your house reek for months, but cheese is
ace when it’s done right (which it is in this case). This one’s a
keeper, although I’m removing one point due to the horrendous “Devil’s
Rendezvous”. 7

Raised Fist: Veil of ignorance Raised Fist: Veil of ignorance

3.8/10

Lord K: It’s funny how Raised Fist manage to have one of the most one-dimensional and annoying vocalists ever, and fucken still
it works. I know, it makes no sense. To listen to Raised Fist these
days is a joy (that actually started with their last album) and much of
that is thanx to the absolutely fantastic drumming by Matte Modin
(ex-Dark Funeral). Here is a guy who can do it all. Incredible fills,
tasteful drumming and a fucken “drive” that is almost unmatched. I love
this guy’s playing. RF’s hardcore/metal is catchy and fun to listen to –
but “Sound of the republic” is better as a whole. “Veil of ignorance”
has no “Hertz island escapades”, the best tune these guys ever wrote.
Still a quality effort by all means, ofcourse sporting an ace
production. Even if you don’t like hardcore – you’ll like Raised Fist.
They have enough metal in them to deserve your attention. 6

Kampfar: I raise my fist and also my middle finger,
then I hijack a jumbo-jet and crash it into your heads. I aim for the
vocalist but my mission is to kill you all. 3

The Duff: Picture two of my fingers in either of
your ears and I’m gradually pulling you towards Final Destination: my
unsavory, slightly limp and unkempt dong; dong is too flattering a word,
though, wart-coated maggot dick coated in hairy fortress of
wire-and-nettle pubes far more appropriate. I’m cackling, always
cackling, my cackles vibrating down my surprisingly enduring arms to
your eardrums, where they haunt you to the moment of “lip-brushing
tenderness” whereby your nightmares become reality and my fun is only
just beginning. This. Is. Shit. 1

Abyss: I absolutely love this band and for many
reasons. Raised Fist has the angriest, most intense hardcore-singer
I’ve heard and he even manages to sound good in the softer songs. Yes,
this is hardcore with metal influences, one might even call it metalcore
but to me that would be doing RF a disservice since they have so much
going for them. A fantastic drummer in Matte Modin, really, really good
riffs and solos and a fantastic knack for writing good songs. Had this
been a real review they would’ve gotten half a point more. 8

CadenZ: Anemic Diluted Hardcore Diarrhea. 3

Floodhorse (guest): Raised Fist? More like a raised
list of reasons why I don’t like this. I could go through it for you,
but just one more second of this cardboard box snare and the annoying
vocals, and I will lose the will to live. 2

Skinlab: The scars between us Skinlab: The scars between us

3.8/10

Lord K: Here we go again… USA
– giving us another one of these “fantastic” groove metal bands. I
despise this shit and have a hard time expressing exactly how much I
want this music to disappear. What’s the fucken point with this soulless
garbage music? Shadows Fall and Skinlab should go on tour together,
only to have their bus explode somewhere on the road. And the scary
thing is that Skinlab is even worse than Shadows Fall. Poor bastards. 2

Kampfar: Color me surprised, Skinlab and their
groove/thrash metal ain’t an entire blackhole of suck. I won’t play “The
scars between us” ever again, death closing in and all, but it
certainly holds one or five riffs worth nodding to. 6

The Duff: So Skinlab are back; I know their last
wasn’t well received, so I was surprised to really dig this considering I
abandoned tough-guy metal with Pantera. Okay, this is an unfair
assessment of the band’s abilities in a nutshell; hardcore with some
good riffs and traditional breakdowns that serve the purpose of making
the Earth quake – nothing wrong with simple, and this album proves it by
being a solid high dose of energy; I don’t know much about the band,
but I’m assuming this a return to their much appreciated earlier albums.
6

Abyss: Dime a dozen NWOAHM which you’ve all heard before. And need not hear again. But this is actually worse than Shadows Fall. 2

CadenZ: I’m trying to concentrate on listening to
this, but after about five seconds my mind starts wandering… mmm… Salma
Hayek… mmm… Johnny Depp… mmm-oops, a new song! Humpty-dumpty, groove
metal. Growls and screams and… mmmmusculous, hairy goat legs… 4

Floodhorse (guest): Not much to say about this,
except that it’s dated tough guy metal with somewhat annoying vocals.
Sounds like a death metal band trying to be Biohazard. 3

Leaves' Eyes: Njord Leaves Eyes: Njord

3.8/10

Lord K: And I thought we were a metal site? Sure I
did… Well, this bitch once sang in some kind of half-metal band so I
guess the connection is metal enough. Like one would expect, Leaves’
Eyes is hardly a heavy band. Imagine some more guitar based soundtrack
to a movie like” Braveheart” or “My Little Pony” and you are close to
what they do. The occasional growl shows up and sounds like shit, in
perfect symbiosis with Liv’s weak and irritating “operatic” bullshit.
Emotional music? My fucken penis got more emotions. But I do love
“Braveheart”, so… 4

Kampfar: Liv asked her husband, Alex Krull, what
part of her he found most attractive and the answer to that question is
the name of this band. Very sweet, roses are sent, but if you want to
hear this lady at her best, do “Velvet darkness they fear”, not this
quality infested snoozefest. 5

The Duff: Doom mixed with Christmas carols. So, so
bad but with a comedic redemptive factor or two, namely the male “macho”
vocals and the guitars – these types of bands I will always argue are
utter shit when writing riffs, but at least they form a rhythm section, a
backbone; to make them entirely superfluous is a feat in cluelessness
for a metal band that probably never set its priorities straight before
getting into the genre the first place. I picture the man shouting at
his own penis when shifting to the slightly gruff “I STILL HAVE MY MANHOOD, IF NO LONGER
MY DIGNITY” growls, urging it to grow to a little bit past the bottom
of his nuts – this awards them some reprieve. Really, don’t ever
download this unless you want chuckles and cancer. 1

Abyss: What the fuck is up with Liv Kristine’s
head?! She looks like a space alien with a bad case of hydrocephalus,
bulging eyes and all. I think it’s safe to say that this is one chick in
metal who didn’t get to where she is now by her looks. Musically
Leaves’ Eyes is… not really metal. More like sex-less operatic bullshit
by a waterhead-alien bug and her German minions (who fittingly also play
in a band called Atrocity). Liv’s got a clear, nice voice but since
she’s not from this planet she has a very hard time mimicking human
emotions. 4

CadenZ: As organic and emotional as Cher’s lips – filled with pieces of ass and Botox, that is. 2

Floodhorse (guest): Apparently I’m listening to the
new Leaves Eyes album, which sounds like pretty standard chick vocal
metal to me. That being said, Liv has some decent pipes, and the
production is top notch, although synthetic and sterile. I suppose
heartbeat kicks and a full blown Darkthrone production would have
sounded a bit weird, so it’s ok, I won’t remove any points for it.
However, they lose some points for the random gay folk elements like
flutes etc, and the annoyance factor of this sort of music in general.
Points are then generously given back for some badass random growls or
whatever they are by some anonymous genius. The growls alone are
actually good enough to justify a: 7

Shadows Fall: Retribution Shadows Fall: Retribution

3.7/10

Lord K: To me, Shadows Fall are another one of
those incredibly annoying New Wave Of American Metal bands. And you know
what? That’s becoz they fucken are. So, are they any worse than their
“competition” in this field of “metal”? Nope. They are exactly as
terrible. This music is a great example of everything I hate with
today’s modern metal. Let’s play a “hard” riff with some semi-fast
drums, have the vocalist scream his manliest screams until the chorus is
about to take place. Then: clean singing shit-extravaganza. I am sooo fucken surprised. Seriously, die. And take all of your colleagues with you. Is that possibly asking too fucken much? 3

Kampfar: Generic melo-death with shouted vocals
ain’t my thing. True, they aren’t always shouted but when not so they
are quite shite anyway. Only recommended for those in love with
Killswitch Engage and such. Now fuck off. 3

The Duff: At one point in my life, my metal cherry was for “S&M”-era Metallica (aaaaaah… AAAAAAAAAAAAAAH!!!!)
alone; then I started to get into melodic death metal, black metal and
American deathcore or whatever; Shadows Fall were amidst the last group
(and the first, haha, psyche SHADOWS FALL!
Psyche in your stupid motherfucking collective face); to this day, and
no disrespect as I’m just being the ass I wake up to every day, I still
think the first three full-lengths to comprise some very good music,
go-to for my chill-out shit when not making sweet, sweet love to my
lubed up hand to Barry Manilow’s “If I Should Love Again” (lubed up with
my tears, Barry; God bless you and your way of dealing with the pain).
“Threads of Life” wasn’t much up my alley; even though I’d sacrificed my
love of such a style of metal for the only form of music that matters, I
could tell the band was tapped on a creative front – what a fucking
intro to the paragraph that counts, “Retribution” brings back the attack
of previous efforts to some degree and some really good riffs, but
there’s still quite a focus on Brian Fair’s catchy vocals which I
consider to be by far the weakest link in the chain. I will add that the
two guitarists are some of the best in the business; it’s a shame they
can’t be part of something more effective. 6

Abyss: Dime a dozen NWOAHM which youv’e all heard before. And need not hear again. 3

CadenZ: I hate this genre. I can’t believe I don’t
hate this record, I merely dislike it. Shadows Fall actually have some
good riffs and song-writing, but sadly their music is still
metal-fucken-core and therefore incorporates the ingredients which make
it suck. The fucken New Kids On The Block are hired again as chorus
vocalists and poppy gay parts are thrown in here and there to soften up
the heavier thrash riffs (of which the aforementioned good stuff
consist) so radio stations will still play their shit. Fuck you. 3

Floodhorse (guest): This is my first rendezvous
with Shadows Fall, and I’m not impressed. This whole thing sounds very
professional and clinical, a representation of where mainstream metal is
these days, I suppose. Judging by this I am not so sure it is at the
right place, though. They also have the dreaded touchy-feely vocals at
times, which is a cardinal sin if there ever was one. There is obviously
a good drummer present here, but it’s not enough to save them. After
all is said and done, this sounds like a metal boy band. No thanks. 4

Otep: Smash the control machine Otep: Smash the control machine

2.8/10

Lord K: And there’s more hatred to be found in this
edition. I can’t stand this chick fronting the band. I fucken hate her
poem-like lyrics, I fucken hate how she portrays the band and the sooo deep and interesting
writings on their website. If you wanna be a fucken poet, be a poet. If
you wanna be a metal musician, be fucken that. But the thing that is
most irritating is that I don’t despise Otep as a band. They
have some catchy shit going on at times and when the cunt barks into the
mic it’s hard to not be impressed since she obviously possesses some
power in that chest. But her spoken, rap-like lines need to fucken go
most of the time. It’s a good thing Otep aren’t as fucken bad as most of
the shit surrounding them as a band indicate. 5

Kampfar: Smash Otep and their female-fronted nu-core with a mallet manufactured in Singapore. Or Taiwan. 3

The Duff: Not worth thinking up anything funny, as vast as my capabilities on such are – I could pull AIDS out of your anus (I be hollaring at all da pretty leydays out d’ere, HOLLLAAAA!) and still make you laugh about it the next day; a waste of my time and yours. 1

Abyss: Otep is probably the most important person
in Otep’s life and the reason for this is quite simple. No one else
gives a shit about her band. 3

CadenZ: “Never gonna give you up / Never gonna let you down / Never gonna run around and desert you…”
For the first three tracks I waited for Rick Astley to interrupt this
aural gonorrhea, then I stopped hoping and pressed “Delete”. 2

Floodhorse (guest): Sleep inducing stuff, devoid of
any real reasons for me to listen to it. It’s not technically
horrendous in any way, just uninteresting. Otep herself is apparently
into girls, and still there are no pics of her to be easily found, which
may have cost them some possible points here. Yes, my journalistic
integrity is questionable at best, but I don’t care. 3

Gwar: Lust in space Gwar: Lust in space

2.8/10

Lord K: The only relevance this band’s got is when
they are on stage. They put on a fantastically entertaining live show
(cocksucking, squirting and penetrations of a priest is not to toy
around with), no doubt, then again – no one ever gave two fucks (or even
one) about their actual music. I believe the albums are just
an excuse to have some new costumes and characters introduced to a live
audience. It’s silly, but hey – so is your momma. Bottomline is: they
are a more fun listen than f.e Gwarworm, I mean Graveworm, but they get
the very same score for all kinds of reasons. 3

Kampfar: I find the pictures of Gwar to be far more
entertaining than their piss poor take on heavy spiced with some
thrash. Why the fuck is this band still around? 3

The Duff: I was really looking forward to my first GWAR
experience, as I thought the music would far outshine the gimmicky
costumes. I guess it can be taken as an “either/or” situation, but if
the image they sell isn’t taken into account in conjunction with the
standard of the music, then these songs do not fare well. With the
lyrics and Styrofoam taken as part of the full package along with the
music on display, I guess the boisterous “FIRE AND BALLS FOR FLAMING BALLS
OF FIRE” attitude has some value. I’m not impressed at all, really,
personally, and it’s not like my hopes were high seeing the guys in
press releases and such. 2

Abyss: Gwar is a joke band, notice the lack of
hyphen between the words; indicating that Gwar is not a band that has
jokingly topics and image, but rather IS a joke. Safe to say, Gwar can
go back to the castle Snake and play with Graveworm and the other RPG-hobbits and the rest of the world wouldn’t care. 3

CadenZ: “I like killing more than sex”.
That awesome lyric helps, but the raspy vocals sound old and dated as
fuck. Some of the riffs groove ass, but otherwise this is a huge
suckfest. 2

Floodhorse (guest): I didn’t know Bender from
“Futurama” was the Gwar vocalist. He does a decent job, although Gwar is
pretty hard to take very seriously, even without the masks and
codpieces in your face. For some reason I get a heavy Merauder vibe here
at times. I am not quite sure if that is a plus or not. What I am sure
about is that I will not be putting this on much in the future, that’s
for damn sure. It has some enjoyable aspects to it from time to time,
but not enough to make me a fan. 4

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This entry was posted on June 19, 2014 by in Audio Autopsy.
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