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Victimizer: Tales of loss and new found serenity

11/01/11  ||  Khlysty

Death metal can be a pain in the ass and a real deal-breaker when it comes to crossover acceptance of metal. It’s brutal, it’s convoluted, it’s –a lot of time- as unmusical as it gets, it creates a yucky effect on people who try to “get into” metal. I mean, try to persuade anyone who has little experience with extreme forms of music, that metal’s good for him, by making them listen to, say “Entrails Ripped From A Virgin’s Cunt”, or something by early Grave. See them leaving screaming and covering their ears in terror? Well, what exactly did you expect their reaction to be?

And, then, you got a band like Victimizer. Coming from the land of tulips and coffee shops, Victimizer is as death metal as it gets; but, with a twist: their songs can be easily approached and digested by normal people. See, these guys know perfectly well how to write good, complex songs that would make death metal aficionados proud. But, they also know how to weave quite a bit of catchy melody into the songs’ generally brutal and ugly fabric. This melody comes mainly in the form of wonderfully placed guitar harmonies and leads, but the band displays an affinity for, ehm, streamlining the songs’ form, without ever sacrificing an iota of power and brutality.

The riffs are textbook-death metal, but the guys in Victimizer seem to –instinctively?- know how to apply them, so as the songs retain a constant melodic undercurrent, which makes them catchier than all hell. Plus, the guitar harmonies are pure NWOBHM, without sounding out of place are redundant. The production –pretty clean and punchy, with a mix job courtesy of one Dan Swanö…- enhances the whole effect, making the record sound lively and strong, without blurring the details of the stellar musicianship. My only gripe comes from the drums, which sound too much triggered for their own good, while sometimes the blasting becomes tiresome. On the plus side, the vocals, while raspy and br00tal, never fall this side of unintelligibility.

All in all, Victimizer offers a pretty interesting take on death metal: ugly enough to clean the premises of wimps, melodic enough to offer the more daring ones something that they can relate to and enjoy. “Tales Of Loss And New Found Serenity”, while not a landmark record, is one hell of a cool listen and offers quite a bit of interesting stuff to sink your teeth into. Good job, guys.

7,5

  • Information
  • Released: 2010
  • Label: Deity Down Records
  • Website: Victimizer MySpace
  • Band
  • Niels Feekes: vocals
  • Richard Sastra: guitar, vocals
  • Andrew van der Schaft: guitar, vocals
  • Chris Thompson Rosall: bass
  • Romeo Gerrits: drums
  • Tracklist
  • 01. For What Matters Now
  • 02. A Psalm to the Fallen
  • 03. Bodhi’s Lyric
  • 04. Left Unsung
  • 05. Past the Eulogy
  • 06. To Preserve From Precipice
  • 07. Feeding the Rats
  • 08. Reunited For Eternity