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Audio autopsy

Audio Autopsy - May 2007

01/05/07  ||  Global Domination

Vomitory: Terrorize, brutalize, sodomize Vomitory: Terrorize, brutalize, sodomize

8.8 /10

Lord K: As you can see, there’s only four of us in this edition of AA. Why? Fishermane and Farlus went on a gay honeymoon and while being more interested in the cock, they simply couldn’t make this edition on time. A nice “fuck you” to them for that. We’ll see if they are back next time or if their spots are taken by someone else on staff. And now, let the fun begin with the winner of this month’s AA:

Attention, death metal bands of the world! The Swedish veterans once again prove why they kill the competition out there. Mixing up their trademark death metal with some slower passages this time around makes “TBS” a little bit more varied compared to their older stuff, though Vomitory kills most ferociously when they do the d-beat and the blasts. They are the absolute leaders of that. ROTTEN!!! CADAVER!!! Vomitory is the Peter Forsberg of death metal, without the injuries. 9

Ripper Bendix: KILL! KILL! KILL! KILL! KILL! KILL! KILL! KILL! KILL! KILL! KILL! KILL! KILL! KILL! KILL! KILL! KILL! KILL! KILL! KILL! KILL! KILL! KILL! KILL! KILL! KILL! KILL! KILL! KILL!
Fuck. The. Fucken. Rest. 9

Syrrok: This editions, hands-down, winner for sure. Vomitory give everyone what they wanted PLUS an increasingly stellar production. Everything about these guys defines death metal and raises the bar ever-higher for quality metal. I love this album, I love these guys, I love making my goldfish swim to it. 9

Hanging Limbs: These guys should have a Ph.D in death metal. I wanted to dislike this because most reviewers here favor GD-affiliated bands (and I like to root for the underdog), but tell the Colonel I will be unable to accomplish my mission. This is the type of music that makes people think they can survive a 300 ft. plummet into The Bog of Eternal Stench. 8

Dark Tranquillity: Fiction Dark Tranquillity: Fiction

8.3 /10

Lord K: These guys still struggle in the shadow of their famous colleagues In Flames (just to name one). Not that they sound much alike or anything, but they are friends, from the same town and probably feel a little neglected. DT’s one of all these bands that definitely release good album after good album, but still I just can’t get into it all that much for all that it’s worth. Nonetheless a solid release, just as we have grown accustomed to with Dark Tranquillity. It just won’t get regular spins at my place. But there’s absolutely no denying that DT’s got their thing down to the core. 7

Ripper Bendix: “Damage Done” and “Haven” are the only DT albums I know and they get average spin-time at my place. DT are some sort of a solid band I can always fall back to when I am sick of the other, similar sounding bands. I think “Fiction” is going to break this habit because it is one fucken massive effort of an album. It’s lacking an über-song like “Monochromatic Stains” though, but that doesn’t tip the scale too fucken much. Excellent shit! 8

Syrrok: Fucken Swedish stalwarts do everything they should and actually achieve a decent guitar sound. Something was always missing with DT and I swear it isn’t the sometimes goofy-electronics. Perhaps it was a female singer? No. Perhaps an androgynous lead singer? No. Perhaps 10 well crafted songs? Yes. Strong work kids. 9

Hanging Limbs: This might be the best album I’ve heard so far this year. Better than “Character” and among the most consistent and interesting albums they’ve ever put out, which says a lot about a band that has been tits since day one. 9

Hatesphere: Serpent smiles and killer eyes Hatesphere: Serpent smiles and killer eyes

6.8 /10

Lord K: It’s obvious, Hatesphere thrashes with the elite, and have done so for like 4 albums in a row now. It’s about fucken time they get some well-deserved fucken recognition as The Haunted completely pussied out and went emo on us with the return of Dolving and the lack of Jensen’s writing. The Danes are, without a doubt, one of the strongest forces in the world of thrash metal today. Fuck bands like Legion Of The Damned and their cohorts, they have absolutely nothing on Hatesphere. I raise my penis for the Danes. And yes, they are allowed to touch it. That’s how good these bastards are. 8

Ripper Bendix: Hatesphere know how it’s fucken done. The last fucken album was killer, and this one is no exception. This here feels like a fucken vacation in Thailand with happy ending in comparison to bland paint-by-numbers shit like Legion of The Damned. 8

Syrrok: Still too emo hardcore! These guys got the skill to groove, but the black-hatted brigade again take over in the vocal department which leads me to thoughts of elbow spider-web tattoo’s, raised trucks, and wife beaters. Ignore that aspect and you have a damn killer groovy band. But yeah, try to ignore that. 5

Hanging Limbs: Good riffs and mostly catchy songwriting, but bad vocals and a little too much hardcore prevent this from getting a higher score. Listening to this is like getting a blowjob while blindfolded. It may feel good, but for all you know it could be a dude down there. I have mixed feelings about this album, but there are a few killer tracks that suck me into Hatesphere’s world. I guess it was a dude after all. 6

Dimmu Borgir: In sorte diaboli Dimmu Borgir: In sorte diaboli

6.5 /10

Lord K: Not really as great as I thought it’d be as Dimmu’s known for delivering some fine quality with their albums. It’s definitely sounding Dimmu Borgir, make no mistake, but the overall catchiness of an album like “Puritanical euphoric misantropia” is kinda absent here (thank fuck the hideous drum sound of said album is as well). Dimmu’s bombastic with the best of them, semi-evil with the rest of them and absolutely a notch better than most symphonic black metal bands, if you can call Dimmu that. Rundown: “ISD” is a good effort, but it didn’t live up to my high expectations. Then again, I was never much of a superfan in the first place. Anyways, it absolutely deserves a solid score, equivalent of the deadly sins: 7

Ripper Bendix: Jesus fucken Christ, them dudes got fucken fat. What? Am I supposed to write more here? Aw, fuck. Well, it is a solid Dimmu output, not as bombastic as “DCA” and with regular keyboards instead of an orrrrchestraaaa. Is it enough now? No? Man, fucken “DCA” blew me right the fuck away and “ISD” doesn’t. Period. 6

Syrrok: Lots of talk about the production on this one, but I don’t see it. I think that any comments about the production are based solely on the fact that their last few were put through the fucken “heavy metal perfection machine” that anything by comparison would sound a bit more “raw”. Well, “raw” or not, I fucken dig this shit. Dimmu are becoming a band that is transcending (and including) the limitations of the black metal tag, and that’s only a good thing. 7

Hanging Limbs: It’s been awhile since I heard this band, not including the re-recording of “Stormblåst”. They’ve always put out quality albums that, while bordering on mass appeal, were far from sell-out. Nothing sticks out on first listen as being truly remarkable, but there are shades of brilliance… and Simen Hestnaes. I think my rating will grow faster than Al Gore locked in a room full of Twinkies, but for now it gets a: 6

Monstrosity: Spiritual apocalypse Monstrosity: Spiritual apocalypse

6.3 /10

Lord K: No matter the talent of these guys, the groove here is missing like bassist Mike Poggione’s Mensa score (bring on them hatemails again, we miss you!). Ok, not exactly at that level as “Remnants of divination”, for example, is a damn groovy tune, but it made for a good laugh to put it like that for the intro. And we know Mike will love it. Monstrosity’s about neatly executed death metal, by the way. The production is fine (though the bass is still too low. I wanna hear those 400 strings clearly. “Is way up there” as someone famous would put it in one of his mails). The playing is top notch, but still I think this album will be lost among all the other recordings released nowadays. Bonus point for the mentioned track, minus a point for having Poggione in the band. Still, a solid death metal effort. How many Poggione-jokes did we get this time? Not enough, that’s how many. 7

Ripper Bendix: Excellent shit that doesn’t leave an impression on me, even though it does every fucken thing to achieve just that. Maybe that’s the problem… trying too hard? It is vitally important to remember the almighty God of GROOVE when doing death metal. Vomitory know how it’s done – Monstrosity somehow lost it because of technical ambitions, which is a shame. 7

Syrrok: There are some terrifically rippin’ tunes on this one, but nothing that’ll get the horse buckin’ all the way back to the farm. What that means is that this album falls under the “ok, that was death metal. Now what?” category. 4

Hanging Limbs: This band has been at it for awhile, and it shows. Their sound is definitely rooted in old school death metal, which makes it a nice alternative to the modern tech death metal bands like Origin or Beneath The Massacre. There is something dirty about their sound that I really dig, but it’s certainly not those annoying machine gun snare fills. I wouldn’t say this tops “Imperial Doom”, but it has my finger hovering over the repeat button. 7

Vital Remains: Icons of evil Vital Remains: Icons of evil

6/10

Lord K: “Dechristianize” was quite excellent, not to mention that Glenda Benton never sounded more evil than on that album. What it suffered from though was too long songs (and a bad reputation about the drums being sped up after the recording – which I believe by the way) for no good reason. They didn’t exactly learn from that mistake and we are again treated with death metal songs between the 6-9 minute mark. And as if that wasn’t enough, the power that Glenda had on “Dechristianize” is not here. Fuck if I knew why. Either way, “Icons of evil” would be an 8 if it wasn’t for the too-long songs making it all a bit too unfocused. And yes, I have understood that this guitarist guy is quite talented (and certainly wants to show that off as often as possible within the tunes). 7

Ripper Bendix: Is Glen actually singing on this album or…? Just kidding, he is. Well… “Dechristianize” was better song-wise, and this here is better production-wise. That’s pretty much all. For a band that’s out to kill, it’s not really a fucken good sign when the review fucken ends there. All in all nothing to get crazy over, but maybe the mediocrity of it will have you grab your sniper rifle and fuck off into the bell-tower. 6

Syrrok: Great shit in the same SPIRIT as Vomitory, but nowhere close to the same level of song writing, production, or massive feel. These guys have been around forever and will continue to be like your favorite hemorrhoid. Satanic hemorrhoid, I guess. 5

Hanging Limbs: If I still made the same mistakes today that I made four years ago, I’d be sleeping with women named Larry. This disc is only a slight improvement over “Dechristianize” and has no songs as good as that disc’s title cut. Amazingly enough, I find myself drawn to listen to it. It’s all that damn hype! 6

Marduk: Rom 512 Marduk: Rom 512

5.8 /10

Lord K: Never liked Marduk? Same here. Changed opinion after hearing “Rom 512”? Same here, kinda. I think this is thanx to the more varied songs. It’s obviously not all about blasts anymore. No matter how much I love me some blasts, in the end it gets kinda boring if that’s all you get with a release. This is definitely better than anything else Marduk’s released. I’m fucken surprised. And that is in a good way. 5

Ripper Bendix: Did Marduk grow up or something? No more constant blasting, and even some Burzum riffing here and there. I must say I am impressed even though I still prefer Legion’s voice over Mortuus’. This album deserves more time than I can give it for an AA review so I’ll give this a 7 and you throw a dice and add whatever result you fucken get. 7

Syrrok: A surprise, for sure. A metal drumming delight to say the least, and the goofiness of Marduk doesn’t blur the music for once. Thank Jesus of Nazarene they decided to vary it a bit, as the typical Marduk-blasts in the past have served as a mental metronome that often left me in the corner of the shower, shaking and naked. 6

Hanging Limbs: Finally, an album about old Nintendo games you can play on your computer. Oh, it’s a bible verse? Probably one of those verses that deal with plagues, or death, or whatever gets Marduk off these days. This is better and more varied than most of what I’ve heard from them in the past. It’s intense and well-performed, but only a few songs give me the 10-lb. tea bag I crave from black metal. Fun for a bit, but it doesn’t seem to have the lasting value of last month’s Watain cd. 5

Pain: Psalms of extinction Pain: Psalms of extinction

5.3 /10

Lord K: The fact that Tägtgren is talented, and raving nuts as a muthabitch, is well known. The fact that Pain is kinda, very actually, boring after a few songs is also well-known. But in small doses, Pain’s all fine for the pre-party. Peter’s got his Pain-sound down to the extreme, it’s not just completely for me. This will prolly be the release that really puts Pain on the map for most people though. Peter deserves it for creativity alone. 5

Ripper Bendix: Stick to your guns and play some fucken metal, Peter. Solid, groovy, but bland in the long run. 5

Syrrok: The way Peter’s taking this project just reminds me way too much of NIN and Marilyn Manson, all wrapped up in a gay little powerchord. I realize this is a commercial project so I’ll approach it as such. “Zombie dance” or whatever is just not a good song and I have no idea how that was chosen as the first single. Perhaps this shit is blowing up in Sweden, but if it is I’ll have to start looking to Russia for metal wisdom. I respect the foray into commercial success as it is an admirable goal to live off of your music, but part of your true self dies in the process. 5

Hanging Limbs: I like the sleazy vibe this stuff gives off. I can see NIN fans digging this. It’s less serious and more sing-songy than Reznor’s stuff. Remember that Andrew W.K. song that was popular some years back? This album is a lot like that song. I still dig that song, much in the same way I still dig Ben Stiller or Will Ferrell movies: fun, but ultimately disposable. 6

Within Temptation: The heart of everything Within Temptation: The heart of everything

5/10

Lord K: I really love Sharon Van Anus’ vocals. I really liked their last record. I really wanna punch that bald guitarist in the nose for looking like ass. I also really wanted this album to be a hella lot better than what it is. The completely overblown symphonic elements have been decreased, which is nice, coz those really have a tendency to become utterly annoying at times. It’s just a shame that the material decreased in catchiness as well. 6

Ripper Bendix: So, a buddhist goes to the hot-dog guy and says “make me one with everything”, hahaha. Yeah, sorry, but that was the first I had to think of. Just to clarify a couple of things; I fucking hate WT, Sharon’s voice, the fucking stripe she paints over her eyes and the fact that the band even exists. Do you expect an objective review now? Call the fucken United Nations and start a petition. 3

Syrrok: Within Temptation gives us another 18,000,000 tears on black velvet release. The thing with the female singing is that you need something to balance it out at times, roughen it up. Symphonic elements do nothing towards this, but rather trap the band in the ever-limiting black-eyeliner, 17th-century reaching, boring orchestral powerchord gibberish. Nothing distinctive here as I could see this being played on pop radio. 4

Hanging Limbs: Bands like this give me a great idea for a reality show. Take a bunch of moderately talented, ass-ugly male musicians and lock them in a house for a few months with a relatively attractive female singer. Each week, whoever gets voted off has to do magazine interviews where they mispronounce his name and only ask questions about the singer. Better yet, lock the singer in a room with no windows or cameras. The winner is the one who goes the longest without raping her. My money is on the bassist from Lacuna Coil. 7

Scarve: The undercurrent Scarve: The undercurrent

4.8 /10

Lord K: I thought the last album, “Irradiant”, was quite fantastic at times. “The undercurrent” is not up there with said recording, I’m sad to say. We get technicality, death metal, other metal, more technicality and fantastic musicianship all over the place though. One second Scarve sound like Morbid Angel, the next second Meshuggah (and their sorry imitators) is the inspiration. Either way, they should definitely keep the guy away from doing clean vocals. Those are not very good. 6

Ripper Bendix: Man, it was hard enough getting enough words together for my real review of this fucken album, and now I am struggling for two motherfucking paragraphs because there’s nothing exciting to report! ARGH! See how impressed I am? 4

Syrrok: I wasn’t into these guy’s last album and I’m really not too into this one. I believe they are heading in a progressive direction with the new singer, but the music still sounds like over-technical Shadows Fall-esque, thin, guitar stuff. But I still have a feeling that anyone who can manipulate an instrument like that at least has a fighting chance at writing something decent. It will soon be seen. However this isn’t it yet. 5

Hanging Limbs: It sounds ok, but something about it seems unfocused. It might have something to do with the busy Strapping Young Lad-style production. The potential is definitely there with these guys, they just need to work on their songwriting. 4

After Forever: After forever After Forever: After forever

4/10

Lord K: Except for “Crying with a smile” being a fantastically weak tune, After Forever’s remaining material is aiming for the spot of being the hottest shit since Nightwish and any other semi-metal band with a cunt fronting the act in question. It’s safe to say though that they don’t really got all the tools in the shed needed to achieve this. Naturally the focus is on vocalissa Floor Jansen’s voice (not to mention her completely fucken hideous stage performances) and she’s doing ok, I guess. Nothing more, nothing less. Music for guys who lost their penis and now walk around…eh… penisless. 5

Ripper Bendix: I admit that I like Nightwish and even went to two of their gigs… BUT... that’s the only yodeling chick’n‘dudes with axes band I can tolerate to a certain extent. Yeah, and Evanescence maybe. If you think I forgot TPH here you obviously believe that Jo yodels and you are stupid. 4

Syrrok: The corset-wearing, raven-haired seductress theme just won’t leave this month’s AA. Thank fuck I have some Vomitory to bleed away all the tears caused by this over-produced, f-emo (female-emo) tripe! It’s 2007, NOT 1787! No matter how much you want that, you jerks! 4

Hanging Limbs: “THIS JUST IN FROM METAL NEWS BULLETIN!! Chick vocals do not a good album make! More to come on the Channel 7 News at Ten!”. Good ideas are strewn all about this disc, but too often they are not backed up by quality songwriting. The intro sounds lifted from Hollenthon, but that’s ok. If they lifted the rest of their sound from Hollenthon, this disc might have actually been worth the time and tranquillizers it took to get through it. 3

Omnium Gatherum: Stuck here on snakes way Omnium Gatherum: Stuck here on snakes way

3.8 /10

Lord K: Cannibal Corpse called, they said you sound nothing like them. They are right. Cannibal Corpse don’t have cheesy melodies and they certainly don’t play semi-aggressive metal with annoying vocals. I’m very damn happy about that. Now, where’s my “Bloodthirst” album? 3

Ripper Bendix: Okay,this is annoying. I don’t want to be annoyed. When I am annoyed I injure people. 3

Syrrok: I’ll admit it. I overrated this band in my regular review. Upon first listen I was literally blown away. It sounded fresh, original, and something worth splattering over. Upon many more listens I’m not sure if it holds up that well. The production needs some work and many of the riffs don’t hold up as well on subsequent listens. I still dig the shit but in no way as much as I first did. 6

Hanging Limbs: After listening to this, I realized I could have gotten the same effect by snorting Borax. I’m gonna listen to “Fiction” again. 3

Annihilator: Metal Annihilator: Metal

3/10

Lord K: Annihilator was a fun, quite refreshing and interesting listen… back in fucken 1989. It’s 2007 now, and Annihilator is up there with the millions and millions of bands who should have given up… around 1990. Everyone with an Annihilator patch on their jackets needs to be shot. And shot again. Weak. 3

Ripper Bendix: I respect Annihilator a lot, even though they tend to hideously disappoint. Great live performances don’t count when talking about a new studio album, right? Then this here has no fucken chance to get a higher grade than 4, because it doesn’t grab me by the balls and pound me into dust, which is unfortunately what I expect from Annihilator. NEXT! 4

Syrrok: I respect any band that names an album “Metal”. It’s the most wonderful and perfect word ever coined by Dave Mustaine and it can be applied in any and all life situations. What I DO have a problem with is a shit-band like Annihilator vaginally bleeding all over the word with sub-par riffs, boring compositions and calling it “metal”. This is not “true metal” or “traditional metal”, or any of that. It’s just ballsack gibberish. 3

Hanging Limbs: These guys are the quintessential “used bin” band for me. That is, I will almost always buy their disc if I see it in the used bin for a nice used price. This one is different. Shitt(ier)y vocals, questionable songwriting, boring production, an awful Black Sabbath “cover”… Seriously Jeff, what the hell happened here? 2

Nine: It's your funeral Nine: It’s your funeral

2/10

Lord K: Nine never interested me and this new album will keep my interest at exactly that level. If these guys score top 3 in this edition, I’ll start a band, playing this exact kind of boring (HC) influenced bullshit “metal” for the rest of my life. Please don’t end up in the Top 3. I wouldn’t be able to take the pain. 3

Ripper Bendix: NINE? Yeah, “nine” is gonna be exactly your average in this AA… TIMES THREE. Wanna bet? 2

Syrrok: I turned this album off to listen to old A-Team reruns. 2

Hanging Limbs: I don’t think I like this, therefore I am not. 1

Manowar: Gods of war Manowar: Gods of war

1.5 /10

Lord K: 16 songs where something like 15 are intros or outros. That leaves us with one song. And that is one song too fucken much. 2 jävla points becoz they are flaming homosexuals. What a sad, sad group of testosterone filled asses disguised as musicians. I fucken loathe today’s Manowar. “Hail to England”, here I come. 2

Ripper Bendix: I don’t think it is a good sign when you listen to an album and piss yourself with laughter. Okay, I never was the biggest Manowar fan, but nevertheless… aren’t there supposed to be songs on an album and not just fucken Bontempi keyboard wankery? How many real songs do we have here? Three? Four? What’s the motherfucking matter with those assholes? “Die For Metal”... yeah… right. For those who don’t know the context: Joey De’Mayo/Ketchup/Mustard claimed to be ready to die for metal as one German magazine editor confronted him with Manowar’s sell-out concerning outrageous ticket prices in Europe and their quasi-playback-orchestra shit at last year’s Earthshaker festival. “Grab a gun and shoot me on stage! I am ready to die for metal!”
This reminds us of what? Fuck you, Manowar. 1

Syrrok: Renaissance fair metal without the metal, that’s all there is to say about Manowar. As always, Manowar gives us an album that is fun to listen to once with friends and drunkenly laugh yourself to death on the floor. After that you just get angry that these guys even sell albums. 2

Hanging Limbs: For a band that has been talking about dying for heavy metal for over 20 years, they certainly seem to still be breathing. Ok, this is weird, but am I the only one that has pictured myself playing a first-person shooter video game where Joey DeMaio (bassist) walks around, and rather than guns and bullets he just plays “Flight of the Bumblebee” at every zombie he sees? I’m calling my agent. 1