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Audio autopsy

Audio Autopsy - October 2012

01/10/12  ||  Global Domination

Grave: Endless procession of souls Grave: Endless procession of souls

7.8/10

Lord K: Grave’s not changing anytime soon, you can be sure of that. Ola’s really become a fine fucken vocalist over the years and I admire the guys’ longevity in the no-bullshit death metal scene. You know what you’ll get with today’s Grave, and that’s all fine with me. And yes, the production is bearable this time around. 6

Habakuk: Brains off, here comes death! Fuck this is awesome. 9

CadenZ: Very nice, despite the blatant Darkthrone rip-off (“Flesh Epistle” intro riff = “Triumphant Gleam”, which in turn is surely a Celtic Frost rip-off). Grave’s new platter sounds primitive, raw and full of that great sickly spirit that infested the days of yore (1990-1993). 7

BamaHammer: This is the best Grave album to come down the pipe in a long time. The production is definitely a step up from their last outing, and that classic Grave-y groove will keep you playing this one. 9

Sokaris: Grave doesn’t disappoint (we’ll forget about “Hating life”) and their newest is no exception. Grave groove, Grave blaze, Grave fucken kill. 8

Puteraeon: Cult Cthulhu Puteraeon: Cult Cthulhu

7.2/10

Lord K: Global Domination supports Swedish death metal. Puteraeon (does that even mean anything?) plays Swedish death metal. Sometimes you don’t need originality, sometimes you don’t need anything fresh. Sometimes you just need a good ol’ slab of Swedish death metal. Here you go, Puerto Rico Puteraeon delivers it. 6

Habakuk: Cthulhu themed old school death metal: That spells fail-safe in Swedish. 8

CadenZ: So more Swedeath you say? Give it to me, shove it in, any day of the week. Unoriginal? No prob, still better than the majority of the shite that’s released today. 6

BamaHammer: Still not entirely sure how to pronounce it, but Puteraeon is some extremely solid and very competent death metal that’s been charred just enough to call it blackened. 7

Sokaris: Holy shit, where do I sign up for this cult? I totally heart the tentacled one and Puteraeon is bringing some of the best death I’ve had the pleasure to scorch my face to this year. 9

The Faceless: Autotheism The Faceless: Autotheism

7/10

Lord K: You can’t accuse them for not being innovative. Sometimes it works and sometimes it don’t. In small doses this is great, but a complete album is just way too much for me to sit through. When they shine, they really shine though. It might be a grower. Just like your momma. 7

Habakuk: Wow, this was unexpected. What I thought of as a deathcore band is actually a heady yet genuinely intelligent act in the heritage of later Death. 8.

CadenZ: One of my tech death favorites disappoints. Dry and lifeless production, bland songwriting and no dick whatsoever. Compared to their earlier efforts, that is. Which means that “Autotheism” is still pretty good, but a disappointment nonetheless. 6

BamaHammer: Easily the best album by The Faceless so far. They’ve never really been my thing, but there’s some good tech-death groove to be found here. Also a contender for the title of “Most Drum Kicks Ever in a Quarter of a Second”. 7

Sokaris: I remember thinking “I’d like these guys if they upped the prog and dropped the breakdowns”. Well, shit, they listened. 7

Katatonia: Dead end kings Katatonia: Dead end kings

6.8/10

Lord K: It’s impressive how Katatonia went from a complete shit band in the early days to the Katatonia of today that we all fucken dig. They sure create some insanely moody and fine music, and it’s time for them to grow alot bigger shortly. They deserve it. 8

Habakuk: This is like Linkin Park with more metal cred. From a technical viewpoint there is nothing wrong with all this groove/clean/piano mix, but the style doesn’t grab me. 6

CadenZ: As always, numerous listens are warranted to get to the bottom of the new Katatonia. Still, let’s see what kind of first impressions “Dead End Dongs” leaves: some stale proggy-just-for-the-sake-of-being-proggy riffs, no big immediate hooks and an overall mellow atmosphere, which is the big selling point here. Moving more and more in the direction of Anathema, this should be a grower just like all Katatonia discs since “Brave Murder Day” (which ruled from the first spin). 7

BamaHammer: I’ve never been a huge Katatonia fan, and stop me if I’m wrong, but this sounds pretty much exactly like the last 37 Katatonia albums. It’s still decent, but it’s absolutely nothing new. 6

Sokaris: Morose, dark, melodic rock. I keep slacking on checking out Katatonia beyond their metal material and I’m planning on amending that after hearing this. 7

Nachtmystium: Silencing machine Nachtmystium: Silencing machine

5.8/10

Lord K: Ok, well… this, eh… is black metal shit. 2

Habakuk: Sounds like black metal. Is black metal. Gets a: 7

CadenZ: Nice atmospheric something-something with one part post-rock, one part occult rock and 6,66 parts black metal. So all nice and all, but seriously, what the fuck is up with the drum sound during fast hi-hat beats? Over-compression or sidechaining or some other fucked up shit screws up the whole production during those parts. 7

BamaHammer: Thanks to forumer Ryan Samuel for turning me onto these guys. This is some excellent black metal from the US of Ass. If you like good black metal, you need to try these guys. This probably isn’t their best album, but it’s damn good. 8

Sokaris: A much more straightforward, b(l)ack to basics of album as opposed to the two “Meddle” albums. That said, there are some experimental atmospheric touches here and there. 5

Testament: Dark roots of earth Testament: Dark roots of earth

5.8/10

Lord K: “The kings are back!”, “The return of the thrash kings!”, “Kings this, kings that” bla bla bla… It’s been all over the Internet how this album is such a grand return (have they been gone?) and whatnot. “Dark roots of earth” is not what those promotional ads would make you believe it is. How surprising. I find this album to be absolutely redundant and uninspired in all areas. Almost forgot, how refreshing of them to insert a blastbeat or two. Yes, I am being sarcastic as fuck. 4

Habakuk: I cannot find anything wrong with this, and I’m not a huge Testament fan. Good! 8

CadenZ: The energy is there, more so than on “The Formation of Erection”, but the quality hooks are missing. Great to hear The Atomic Clock again. 7

BamaHammer: Well this is one tired-ass sounding band of middle-aged bastards. 4

Sokaris: I’ll defend early Testament to the death, but more and more they seem like a band that just doesn’t know what they want to do. Still, not bad, but did someone bet Gene Hoglan money he couldn’t slip in a blastbeat on a Testament record? 6

Kings Of Asgard: ...To north Kings Of Asgard: …To north

5.6/10

Lord K: This is what Amon Amarth would sound like if they couldn’t write decent songs. The folk riffs fucken suck it though. 4

Habakuk: I’m enjoying this, although I couldn’t give less of a shit about Vikings and how they were like all Black metal and stuff. But still this album feels too long and that is not a good thing. 6

CadenZ: Yes, there’s room for one more viking death metal band from Sweden. Especially since these guys are a bit more old school and at times better than the AA boys. The cheesy folk riffs are catchy and entertaining, though certainly an acquired taste. Plus points for covering Isengard’s “Vinterskugge”, minus points for not even approaching the greatness of the original. 7

BamaHammer: “To North” what? Or what “To North”? Honestly I don’t care which direction, but just get out of my speakers. 4

Sokaris: So Metal Blade is still signing decent bands? KOA sound a bit like the cold melodicism of Dissection with the primal riffing of Unleashed. Not near as kickass as either of those bands but impressive nonetheless. Have these guys gone out in front of Amon Amarth yet? 7

Dew-Scented: Icarus Dew-Scented: Icarus

5.4/10

Lord K: I don’t know about Dew-Scented, man. Just like many other bands they do their modern thrash metal without any apparent flaws, but it just won’t click with me. The germ(an)s dish it out and pummel away to the best of their capabilities, but still it’s ending up a 100% anonymous and uninteresting. This is something I state over and over, I know. Don’t blame me, blame today’s bands for being fucken insanely generic. 4

Habakuk: Apparently not a complete full speed outfit anymore, Dew-Scented deliver their unique brand of thrash in a catchy, pretty great way these days. Maybe it was actually a good thing that it’s been about six years since I last bought one of their albums. 8

CadenZ: Do you belieeeve in life after love dinn-dinn-dinn-dinnnn…no, but I do believe that Dew-Scented love their deathrash formula to death. They do it well, but other than a few passing moments they fail to capture my full attention. 6

BamaHammer: Doo-Scented. A few too many hardcore breakdowns for my taste. And a hyphenated band name? You can’t be serious. 4

Sokaris: I’m genuinely curious when these guys put out a new album just to see what “I” word they’re gonna use next. Speaking of naming things, Dew-Scented are the third worst named decent death metal band. The first two are Jumpin’ Jesus and R.U. Dead? All of these bands are German, strangely enough. Can I get an instrumental version of this? 5

Kobra And The Lotus: Kobra and the lotus Kobra And The Lotus: Kobra and the lotus

5.4/10

Lord K: Without the chick these fuckers wouldn’t cause much of a stir in the scene. They would just be another catchy but irrelevant metal band. Not now. Not with whatever-her-name-is fronting them. I love her voice and together with the professionally and competent heavy metal they present here I can’t help but to be fucken floored. Excellent. Easily my personal winner for this edition. 9

Habakuk: Sensory and the Overload. Sorry lady, I shall pass. 5

CadenZ: I saw some pics of this boobarella and her minions, and instantly understood why there’s a hype around them. After hearing the music, I understand the hype even better – it’s all about her badonkers. This is bland, boring heavy metal. She can sing but who cares when the songs are snoozefests. Boobs or get the fuck out. 4

BamaHammer: Holy hell, this is some generic shit. 3

Sokaris: Figured this wouldn’t be anything special, was pleasantly surprised. The leads fucken scorch and their frontwoman’s got a nice lower range wail that fits the band’s crunchy power/traditional metal approach. 6

Tankard: A girl called Cerveza Tankard: A girl called Cerveza

5.4/10

Lord K: I liked Tankard when I was… well, 13 years old. The fact that they are still going is impressive. What’s even more impressive is that everyone is still giving zero fucks about them. 3

Habakuk: Better than expected and with some grittiness again, but in the end nothing I’d buy. 7

CadenZ: I can appreciate the humor value. The music, not so much. It’s like listening to a Bud Light. 3

BamaHammer: Thrash has never really been my cup o’ tea, but at least this one’s funny. 6

Sokaris: I feel like I shouldn’t have as much of a blast with this as I do. It’s super infectious, viciously thrashy in parts and genuinely kind of funny. I have to restrain myself from yelling out the chorus to “Metal ladyboy” in inappropriate places… which happens to be everywhere. 8

In This Moment: Blood In This Moment: Blood

4/10

Lord K: I fucken hated that video tune that came out some years back. It’s also pretty much the only thing I know about In This Moment. Now, with “Blood”, I have to re-evaluate my opinion a bit it seems. This is a lot better than expected, but I still can’t fully appreciate those high screams the chick pulls off. Nice electronic effects though, fuckers. 7

Habakuk: Does anyone remember the Guano Apes? This sounds like them at their best, but worse. Strange but true. 6

CadenZ: I’m usually not at all into this kind of industrodubstepmetalcore, but there’s something about the arrangements and execution that just screams devotion and conviction. I’m not sold, far from it, but I’m still listening. That should count for something. 4

BamaHammer: Chick singer. She screams. It’s annoying. Pretty terrible. 2

Sokaris: Non-riffs, hideous “edgy” pop singer vocals (complete with angsty whining) trendy dubstep electronics all presented in a squeaky clean, toothless package. This is like Hatebreed for Ke$ha fans. 1

Steve Vai: The story of light Steve Vai: The story of light

4/10

Lord K: Obviously a great guitarist. Obviously also really fucken worthless at creating interesting music. 4

Habakuk: Some of it is good, but half of the material is actually actively annoying me. That is not a good sign. 4

CadenZ: One of the greatest guitarists of all time proves once again that he is all that, except when it comes to composing; in that regard Steve’s only decent. Every once in a while Vai also makes things too complicated to sound good, he probably just wants to push himself (which, considering his prowess already as a teenager 30+ years ago, can’t be too easy nowadays). Still, I like most songs and the superb musicianship lifts the rest above average. 6

BamaHammer: I used to dig Steve’s stuff. It was interesting. Now it’s just plain weak. This sounds like elevator music from a guy who is way too good to be making elevator music. 3

Sokaris: This is for old guys who wear silk shirts with flame prints. 3

Dublin Death Patrol: Death sentence Dublin Death Patrol: Death sentence

3.8/10

Lord K: A couple of recognizable names in this band; Testament’s Chuck Billy and former Exodus frontman Steve Souza. I guess Dublin Death Patrol is a simple outlet for the guys to have a giggle and play metal with no real intentions but to have a giggle and play metal. Good for them, but it’s nothing that even remotely interests me even if it’s funny (or something) to hear those guys trade vocals with each other. When I think about it, this could as well be rejected Testament material with Steve Souza on guest vocals. Fitting that it scores the same with me as the new album from said band. My point is made. 4

Habakuk: …and if you got rid of those Gollum vocals, you’d at least be a mediocre chugcore band. 4

CadenZ: Don’t dig. Devoid of desperation, determination and… dick. I guess they had fun recording this, but when all of your riffs have appeared on at least 300.000 records, it’s time to hang up the fucken guitar and go seek a retirement home somewhere. 3

BamaHammer: Every male in the Billy family collaborating with the most annoying vocalist from Exodus history will never be something that will interest me. And your moniker is dumb as hell. 3

Sokaris: Zetro and Chuck Billy doing vocals together is pretty badass even if it’s on top of kind of vanilla thrash. 5

Korpiklaani: Manala Korpiklaani: Manala

3.4/10

Lord K: Die. Take Nachtmystipenis with you. 3

Habakuk: OH GREAT! A Korpiklaani double CD! Well, I might be living in Finland, but I’m not that retarded. Grab your drinking horns and leave. 4

CadenZ: You’re at a social gathering of some sort. You’ve had too much to drink and wanna go to sleep. Some annoying fuckers still keep drunkenly hollering out-of-tune folk songs for their own amusement, and everybody else’s annoyance. You grab a couple of empty bottles. Break them into the faces of the folk song folk. You end their suffering, as well as your own. A collective applause praises your heroism. Korpiklaani is no more. And the world is a better place, again. 3

BamaHammer: Enjoyable for about 17 seconds just because it’s weird. 4

Sokaris: This is kind of embarrassing to listen to. Dork-ass happy humpa horseshit. Ensiferum just released their worst album and I’d MUCH MUCH rather listen to that instead. 3