Saturday, June 16, 2012

The legions of brutality, and the legions of stupidity and mediocrity

Brutally Deceased (Czech Republic): Dead Lovers’ Guide (Lavadome)
The quick, easy way to describe Brutally Deceased is: a younger, hungrier, rawer Dismember with well-placed bursts of ultra-high speed used for emphasis.
Traditional, classic Stockholm/Sunlight Studio from 1990-1991 is what really, really drives Brutally Deceased.
Example 1: “Blissful Desecration”: begins with a midpaced, total buzzsaw riff, slightly melodic in a raw way, then it speeds up and the superlow growling kicks in, as the song settles into a pace that alternates between uptempo and fast. The middle of this song has a quick guitar “solo,” a bass “solo” and a nice little drum “solo,” too. It then speeds up and ends. Done.
Example 2. “All That Rots and Withers”: The start is total death metal blasting low-growl brutality. Wunderbar! The middle part slows down to an uptempo, galloping speed. This is where you raise your fist and growl along. Don’t get too comfortable, here comes the blasting once again. And done.
¿Comprende? I think so! Oh, yup, they do a cover of Dismember’s “Override of the Overture.” This is less polished than the original because Brutally Deceased is rawer.

Cardiac Arrest (U.S.): Vortex of Violence  (Ibex Moon)   
Cardiac Arrest plays nothing but brutal death metal. The growling is low, and the blasting is constant.
Oh, well, what about the melodies?
What melodies, what you say?! The guitar work is meat and potatoes, direct chainsaw-sound guitar.
This band must hate all those trendy thrash bands, the emo/core bands, and the bands with breakdowns.
Here’s a clue. Suffocation. Lock Up. Bands like those. Mainly, fast and heavy. Lots of heaviness, and on a death metal mode of blast and growl and bang your head, now.
If you hate the brutal stuff, you best keep walking because Cardiac Arrest don’t like you very much and want you to go listen to whatever you like, as long as you stay away from them. Cardiac Arrest is just nasty stuff. Fun, too.

Fisthammer (U.S.): Devour All You See (Horror Pain Gore Death)
Part brutal, blasting death metal, part melodic/thrashy Fisthammer wants everybody moshing.
Not really a bad to stay within one particular, narrow style, Fisthammer appears to be brutal death metal, with other spices. The low, growled vocals and blasting certainly create a particular image.
Tell Fisthammer what you want!
They have it. Speed? Check. Blasts? Check. Fury? Check. Power ballads? Nope! Jazzy parts? No!
Alright, so, they don’t have everything, but they are a-ok. Now, if they could figure out how to do a jazzy power ballad of brutal, blasting death metal, then they would have everything in the world. C’mon, Fisthammer, you can do it!

Kraanium (Norway): Post Mortal Coital Fixation (Comatose)
This just has very little energy, or creativity or intensity, so it’s difficult to see where is the excitement.
Of course, this is exciting to the band themselves, and also maybe metallers who are new to the genre of midtempo/slow-ish “woof-woof, burp-burp…brootal” dog-barking metal.
                  The low-level of creativity and lack of energy really do destroy any possibilities for headbanging or even nodding along.
                  Investigate if you like slow/midtempo, very basic, repetitive burp “brootal” music that has extremely low-IQ horror/gore lyrics.
Sexcrement (U.S.): Sloppy Seconds   (Comatose)
This type of chugging guitar—all the songs sound like “chug-chugga-chugga-chug” and repeat—lacks imagination.
  This is supposed to be heavy and brutal, but it’s not possible to be heavy if the music has no intensity in the playing. Doing play-on/chugga-chugga repetitive guitar riffs offers little in the way of interesting things to the listener looking for frenzied energy, aggression, power, anger, creativity or just a good amount of musical talent.
Deadly Remains (U.S.): Severing Humanity  (Deepsend)   
Chugga-chugga death metal and blast and groove. 
They depend a lot on the play-on riff: the chugging guitar riff that seeks to make the audience mosh. They want the listener to stand up, and mosh.
The growling thrives on the low-muttered completely woof-woof.
Deadly Remains objectives are basic. So the music sounds basic.
The guitar sound is particularly annoying because it comes from the Zakk Wilde school of playing: at every moment the guitar makes a high-pitched irritating sound. Pinch harmonics is one of the most annoying things in guitar playing, but especially when it becomes “the thing” about the songs.
Play a real riff. Do a solo. Anything else that would involve creativity.
Pinch harmonics is the equivalent of that annoying kid who thinks that nails on a chalkboards is a fun sound.
It’s only fun to you because you are making it.
The rest of us want to kill you.
Final verdict: good energy, nice blasting, loving the intensity. Now Deadly Remains only has to stop their guitar player from being so annoying. Stop! Stop! Just play a riff, man!

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