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Global Domination | Audio Autopsy | Audio Autopsy - November 2008

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Audio autopsy

Audio Autopsy - November 2008

01/11/08  ||  Global Domination

Bloodbath: The fathomless mastery Bloodbath: The fathomless mastery

7.25/10

Lord K: Ok, so now Bloodbath wants to be Morbid Angel and sound all American instead of bleeding out all those Swedeath riffs and tunes inspired by the early 90’s in general, and the Swedish death metal scene in particular, that they did so well and got so much love for? I don’t appreciate the move as much as I appreciate the past material from these guys but hey – there’s no denying that “The semenless penistery” is a great display of death metal, painted by some kind of an all-star band. Torture Division is ofcourse better (the world’s best death metal is always better, you know), but it’s nice to see the kids try. Hah! 8

Kampfar: This album is a mix of “Resurrection through carnage” and “Nightmares made flesh”, both excellent albums, and so is “The fathomless mastery”. Not fresh but still fresh. Fuck you. 9

Abyss: The members of Bloodbath are too old and seasoned to really fuck this up, so I guess it’s safe to assume that the stylistic change from the first demo to “The fathomless mastery” is intentional. That said, I can’t say that there’s an awful lot of great songs here, at least none that come close to the absolute facebreakers on “Nightmares made flesh”. This is good, but not really great anymore. 7

Seker: Modern generic death metal that could’ve been put out by anyone, but we’re supposed to ooh and ahh over it because it’s made by the guys from Opeth and Katatonia. It’s well-played, but excruciatingly boring and overproduced. 5

Misery Index: Traitors Misery Index: Traitors

7/10

Lord K: I never cared enough to look into the Dying Fetus/Misery Index connection, all I know is that I can’t fucken stand Dying Fetus all too often. Misery Index on the other hand is a fine piece of brutal, grinding death metal. Nothing spectacular going on here, but they play their cards well and end up with a good hand when the album’s playing time is over. This one stays in my collection. If given the chance, I have a feeling it might even grow on me. 7

Kampfar: I think Dying Fetus is an overrated band. Misery Index, however, isn’t. Put short, “Traitors” is a fine fucking meal of death-ish grind. The doctor recommends. 8

Abyss: I’ve heard a lot of rave about this band but I was fully expecting a Rotten Sound-ripoff for some reason. What I got wasn’t grindcore but super-pissed off, over-caffeinated death metal with a serious political grudge against stupidity and greed everywhere. With great grooves and laser-sharp riffs, I’m real fucking impressed! 8

Seker: I seriously can’t tell what’s going on (apart from the breakdowns) because the production brings vocals, guitars, bass, drums, kazoos, EVERYTHING to the exact same level and then gives it an added silver spraypaint job. I guess it’s better than Dying Fetus, but this is another one I won’t be buying. Also, TRAITORS TRAITORS TRAITORS TRAITORS TRAITORS. Holy shit, we get it already. 5

Burst: Lazarus bird Burst: Lazarus bird

6/10

Lord K: This is the first time I hear Burst. I have heard about them for a long time and they were always one of those bands I knew I wouldn’t like. I was right to some extent. It’s not as hardcore-ish as I imagined it to be (for some reason), but it’s definitely not metal enough, nor brutal enough, for me to enjoy at a larger scale. It’s just quite strange and chaotic. Nothing like Blümchen at all actually. These guys are in the same league as bands like Neurosis and Cult Of Luna; bands that are way too pretentious for me and who are lacking the needed groove I crave in my music. Points for some originality but I’ll keep staying away from Burst. 4

Kampfar: Wasn’t Lazarus the dude Jesus Cunt supposedly revoked from the dead? I think so, but I didn’t know he had a bird. Is it related to the bird phoenix? What color was it? Did Lazarus learn it any swear words? Fuck, I’m so confused right now. Thousand thoughts in my head. Must take a wank. And the music? Well, I hope progressive sludge core something gives you and idea of what to expect. Anyway, this idiot fell of the Burst wagon around halfway through, an overload of pretto, both jizz and jazz very present, the exact reason why. 5

Abyss: Impressive to say the least, Burst manages to twist my nipples in all the right ways by combining their post-hardcore with traces of the filth and fury of their origins. Varied, tasteful and never boring, “Lazarus bird” is just awesome. 8

Seker: Sweden’s answer to Neurosis? Oh wait, that’s Cult of Luna. This is pretty okay though, when they lay off the screams. The vocalist imitating Steve Von Till actually sounds a lot like Taneli Jarva on “Amok”, which is pretty cool. If only the Scott Kelley impression was as listenable… Anyway, expect odd twisting melodies over spastic percussion with some calm moments in between, as well as a melodic death influence. 7

Psycroptic: ObServant Psycroptic: Ob(Servant)

5.75/10

Lord K: If you put the volume down quite a bit, all you hear is the hideous, über triggered kick sound. It’s not like this technical death metal gets any better on higher volumes either. I can handle this in very small doses, and it’s definitely more interesting than something like One Man Army (placed further down on this list) – and that’s that. Necrophagist is way better, but they can go fuck themselves too. 5

Kampfar: The observant listener will before long observe that the drums on this recording sounds really rather clicky due to a liberal use of triggers. Apart from that, well, this is tech death performed in a manner about 10 times less interesting than how Anata does it. So no thanks. 5

Abyss: Tech-death, when it’s good it’s really good. When it’s bad it’s unlistenable. And when it’s so-so it’s Psycroptic. 6

Seker: Technical death metal that’s less wanky than Necrophagist, but with an infinitely worse drum sound. In terms of the band’s career, it’s way better than “Symbols” but nowhere near “Scepter” level. Worth checking out if you’re into this kind of stuff. 7

Zonaria: The cancer empire Zonaria: The cancer empire

5.75/10

Lord K: Cool album title aside, Zonaria’s yet another band lumped into the fold of millions of well-produced, good sounding bands with quite a few highlights and a few slabs of lowlights (is that even a word?). I wanna mention opener “Slaughter is passion” as it holds some really excellent parts, but as a whole the clean vocals kills it for me. If they concentrated on those awesome parts (including the keyboards – that’s some some excellent shit, guys) we’d have a killer band on our hands. I’ll give them a few more albums before they reach that state. No matter what, a huge surprise and one of the better albums in this edition. 7

Kampfar: “The cancer empire” sure sounds a lot less like Hypocrisy than “The infamy and the breed” ever did. Only thing is, they haven’t replaced this feel of later-era Hypocrisy with anything. All I hear is namely generic melo death without a single surprise in store. The doctor recommend mushrooms. 5

Abyss: It seems like the youngsters from Umeå has finally grown up and has come to terms with their identity-issues and accepted that: “Yes, we sound exactly like Hypocrisy, there’s nothing wrong with that but why not mix in Dimmu Borgir as well?” The result? A band that sounds exactly like two other bands but at least the quality of the songs are decent now. 6

Seker: This music is pretty fucken anonymous melodic black/death metal. Well-played, but of little actual importance. Bad-ass album name though. 5

Helstar: The king of hell Helstar: The king of hell

5.25/10

Lord K: As with Hallows Eve (the second major dump of this edition, The Berzerker is number one), I also remember these mongoloids. They sure as fuck sound more vital than today’s Hallows Eve, but even a corpse would do that. Helstar is blessed with a complete idiot doing vocals who destroys any potential this album could have had, if it wasn’t for the fact that it has no-to-very-little potential no matter how you put it. Poor man’s thrash metal is not going to save the world, nor my day. 4

Kampfar: This lot sounds like a Judas Priest not in the need of being shot. However, I’m still like 10 seizures and a couple of cerebral infractions away from enjoying anything power metal, so, in other words, I’m far away from enjoying myself while accompanied by “The king of hell”. And, if you are over 12, you have heard everything on this platter before. Yes, even the couple of good riffs and parts they accidentally managed to include. 4

Abyss: I loved “Nosferatu”, much against better judgment, and I’m glad to say that “The King of hell” is just as whimsical and entertaining. Maybe it’s the blend of technical, slightly progressive riffs and all the markers of speed metal that gives the band a slightly goofy image – but it’s also the reason why I like the band, over-ambitious vocals or not. 6

Seker: Well, I’m not really digging the ultramodern production, and Rivera’s vocals aren’t what they used to be (occasionally he sounds like the Nevermore guy, blech), but the actual music here is pretty bad-ass, if a bit slow by “Nosferatu” standards. Not as good as the new Metal Church, but better than most comeback albums. 7

Darkane: Demonic art Darkane: Demonic art

5.25/10

Lord K: Another one of the million bands without an own identity. This could be exactly whatthefuckever out of Sweden. You know how it sounds. Personally I am so bored with it my cock just fell off. And my girlfriend really loves my cock so I better put on something else and go find it. 4

Kampfar: Darkane rhymes with Mustaine, and also Max Payne, one of the best games ever. Oh, “Demonic art” is business as usual from this direction, uptempo and intricate modern thrash that is. Only this time around the Swedenborganians in question got hold of a worse vocalist. Worse or not, hadn’t it been for this new guy shouting, at times actually trying to sing, there wouldn’t have been any news to report. 6

Abyss: I’ve always managed to find good stuff on Darkane’s albums but I rarely whip them out when I want to list to… anything. Strange that because on paper the band has all the right ninja-moves: pissed of singer, shred-alicious guitar player and a hyperactive drummer. Coming of like the more technical, angular brother of Soilwork’s early sound, this should appeal to… well, those who like Soilwork’s early sound I guess. 6

Seker: Melodic death metal that tries to be brutal, thus completely missing the point. Also, the vocals are terrible. The instrumentation is technical enough, and I guess the production is okay, but I can’t see myself ever listening to this again. 5

One Man Army And The Undead Quartet: Grim tales One Man Army And The Undead Quartet: Grim tales

5.25/10

Lord K: I never saw the greatness in The Crown and I never took a liking in this “new” band. I also never understood what’s so fucken great about Johan’s vocals. This gives me absolutely shit, and yes – I did notice they can play their instruments. But I know about 140066780 other bands that can do that too, and they also create far more memorable music. TATU is one of them. 4

Kampfar: Not bad this, but never anyway near the quality of what The Crown made at any given time during their lengthy career. Their time under the moniker Crown Of Thorns very much included. Oh, Johan Lindstrand, vocalist of both bands, is the link here. Anyway, “Grim tales” is meat and potatoes extreme metal, competent as fuck, but in the end not very exciting. If only the songs had been as good as the titles suggest… 6

Abyss: Johan Lindstrand trudges on and he still fails to get it 100% right. The voice is still intact, but the music still needs to step up to the plate and actually deliver something memorable. “He’s back” is still my favourite song with the band and considering that it’s a Alice Cooper-cover, well I don’t need to say anything more, right? 5

Seker: It’s like The Crown, but not as good; in other words, it’s like every One Man Army and the Undead Quartet album ever. It’s still better than most of the stuff around today though. Thrashy death metal with a melodic twist. 6

Cynic: Traced in air Cynic: Traced in air

5/10

Lord K: That “Focus” album is some fine piece of work at times, but I don’t hold it in such high regards as most people do. So what’s up with “Traced in air”? Mighty fine musicianship for one. Spacey vocals could come in second. Brutal metal is not really the focus (ehum) here, that’s for sure. Cynic creates some emotional shit with a million of things thrown in. I like some of it, but I prefer the debut album. 6

Kampfar: I have listened to “Traced in air” twice now, but the songs sounded all the same the second time around, so there will be no third attempt. And I’m not sure what to call their shit, so progressive metal something with a wee bit strange clean-vocals on top will have to do. Anyway, their so-called classical releases has to be way better and more interesting than this for me to grasp their (near) legend status. Next. 4

Abyss: Except for the occasionally daft vocals, Cynic has a lot going for them. Musicality for example. And pretentious song-titles. This is not really catchy music in the usual pop-sense, but hey, since when was that a disqualifier in metal? 7

Seker: This doesn’t sound much like the Cynic I’m familiar with: in fact, it reminds me a lot of something as lame as Tool or even the Deftones, but with more pretentiousness (that’s quite a statement). Also, the robot vocals sound even worse this time around. I can’t really call this a disappointment though; I was expecting it to suck. 3

Andromeda: The immunity zone Andromeda: The immunity zone

4.25/10

Lord K: Andromeda sounds like something Dan Swanö could have created while being pissdrunk, only it’s not holding nearly as much cheese as his more melodic projects, and it’s hardly along the same standards when it comes to quality and finesse. These guys are blessed with yet another shit vocalist (a common band plague these days) and it’s not like their “progressive” shit halfmetal is helping out matters either. Some cool ideas here and there, but hey – Vanilla Ice had that too and he’s not exactly considered a genius. 4

Kampfar: For all I care, Androcomedia can take their homo-erotic bullshit and shove it up their pissholes, but if you fancy the idea of power metal with a modern feel, catchy at it, this shit is very likely to please the gay in you. 2

Abyss: Progressive metal, phasers on stun and Stargate dialed to Ur-anus! If you like your metal ambitious, spacey and a bit more metal than Ayreon Andromeda will be your bag of space-bucks. Never heard of this band but I’m gonna check them out further, that’s for sure. Farewell Lord Helmet, these are not the droids you’re looking for. 7

Seker: So, what makes this “progressive”, exactly? Is it the Meshuggah percussive riffs? I’ve heard those a million times before. Is it the keyboards? Nah, they’re pretty dull, and standard for your average Century Media/Nuclear Blast/Roadrunner band nowadays. Is it the vocals? Just a generic clean-voiced sing-along from what I can tell. How can something be progressive if it doesn’t progress beyond what has already been done? 4

Head: Save me from myself Head: Save me from myself

4.25/10

Lord K: Find a full coverage here and lemme just add that I’m taking half a point away since this album is (as I suspected) wearing out faster than Head’s mind did when he left Korn. Still some really good material present here. I won’t even go into the importance of avoiding the lyrics this time. I think the actual review stresses that enough. Avoid the lyrics! Damn. 7

Kampfar: Try Powerman 5000 instead. More punch, less Christianity. 4

Abyss: This is even worse then Korn’s latest album. At least now we know the talent didn’t leave with Head. Or maybe God took it from him when he was baptized in ethereal Jahve-semen. No matter what, this ain’t good. 4

Seker: Basically old Korn with a Christian twist. Take a wild guess if I like it or not. 2

Omnium Gatherum: The redshift Omnium Gatherum: The redshift

4.25/10

Lord K: Melodic cheese-death metal anyone? Omnium’s got it. Me? I’ll pass and will put on some Pussycat Dolls to redeem myself. 4

Kampfar: I don’t like the clean and neat melodic death in question, but you can take acid on the fact that here are skills and qualities present. Aplenty even. I just don’t happen to care very much about any of them. Violence please. 5

Abyss: Oh Finland, when will you get it right? Homo-erotic faux-metal will always be homo-erotic faux-metal, no matter how you try to dress it up in d-beats and gruff vocals. Psst. The happy melodies give you away. And the stockings. 3

Seker: What a terrible fucking name: it’s like they couldn’t pick just one name, so they decided to call themselves “Everything”. Fucking lazy. Kinda like the music, which is generic melodic death metal that could be from Sweden, Finland, America, or fucking Madagascar. The vocals are actually pretty good though. 5

Trivium: Shogun Trivium: Shogun

4/10

Lord K: What do you get if you take the best parts of “Master of puppets”, “Among the living”, “Reign in blood” and “Alice DeeJay’s Collected hits – the 400 disc compilation”? Not Trivium, that’s for sure. Cheese metal will always be cheese metal, no matter how much you try to come across as hard’n‘heavy. Trivium do not deserve the hype. Never did. Ofcourse very competent, but so is syphilis. 5

Kampfar: Trivium/triviality. Potato/potatoe. 3

Abyss: Why is an album titled “Shogun” mainly centered around Greek mythology? Because it’s an album by Trivium, that’s why! I suggest you throw all logic and good taste over board, settle down on a beach and wait for the Maenads to tear you apart, at least it will stop the music. 5

Seker: So, we see our Guitar World darlings heading into weeaboo territory, if they weren’t already there in the first place. You might find this metalcore (not thrash, no matter what the magazines tell you) album sandwiched between the latest Dragonforce and a Final Fantasy soundtrack at you average anime nerd’s house, but I’m better than that, and hopefully you are too. 3

The Berzerker: The reawakening The Berzerker: The reawakening

3.75/10

Lord K: One of the shittiest bands in the world? Very fucken possible. 1

Kampfar: One common reaction when telling people extreme metal is the shit, is this one: “Duh, what you are listening to is nothing but sneers on top of a blur”. If all bands have been like The Berzerker, we, and not they, would have been the retards in this equation of ours. If you are in need of violence on disc, try Kill The Client instead. Retard. 2

Abyss: The Berzerker started out as a fun band, I mean mixing gabba-techno with death metal? That’s hilarious! And what’s even more amusing is that the first two albums were actually pretty good. But after four albums the joke (and song-ideas) is over and there’s not too much to grab on to on “The Reawakening”. There’s just speed and a drum-machine. 5

Seker: Oh shit, I remember these guys! This is pretty much how I remember them, too: choppy death metal riffs over a spastic gabber base. I’m not really into this kind of stuff as much as I used to be (I still bust out “Dissimulate” occasionally for old time’s sake), but there’s no denying that it’s pretty well done. 7

Randy Pipers Animal: Virus Randy Pipers Animal: Virus

3.75/10

Lord K: The opening song is called “Cardiac arrest”. Go figure, fucko. 3

Kampfar: Shut your pipe, Randy. Or rather, cut off your fucking fingers already. 3

Abyss: Are you fucking kidding me? Wasn’t Randy Piper a WWF wrestler? Or was that Rowdy Piper? It could’ve been fucking Piper Perabo for all I care, nothing would’ve saved this dreck. 3

Seker: For a second there I thought that said Roddy Piper, and I had some awesome They Live flashbacks. But no, it’s just the guy from W.A.S.P. I’ve never actually listened to W.A.S.P., but this guy has a good voice, and the music is better than most power/traditional metal available recently. This still isn’t Hell Comes to Frogtown, though, so don’t expect too much. 6

Hallows Eve: The never-ending sleep Hallows Eve: The never-ending sleep

2.75/10

Lord K: I remember these guys from back in the day. I wish I didn’t. The production is the only thing worse than the music on this disc. 2

Kampfar: Herrefaen, what the fuck is this? I tell ya. It’s thrash adorned with one of the worst productions I have ever heard, “St. anger” included”. Then again, it’s not like the music in question makes it a tragedy that “The never-ending sleep” ended up sounding this way. It never is when the band in question sounds like being dissolved in acid while performing. Think incredibly sloppy. Only take a listen if you are in need of a laugh. 1

Abyss: Straight outta the 80’s, I present to you Hallows Eve! With a production grittier then “Kill ‘em all” and riffs that were barely fresh in 1988, the band tries to capitalize on the “reunited thrash-bands no one cared about the first time around”-trend. Sufficient to say, a trend I don’t much care for. 4

Seker: Some old school speed metal band that I’m not familiar with. It sounds like nearly every other 80’s band “comeback album”; pretty goddamn terrible. Serious dearth of riffage here. 4