Cavernous, perfect, clean, generic ass plastic production. Do these bands all go to the same place and just put a different name? It sounds like a fukking computer. All the balls have been digitally stitched on. Comparisons to Prong, Unsane, and Helmet kinda make sense I suppose. But only in the sense that it lies in a real middle road territory which is hard to explain, but is generally very basic and unsatanic in feel - yet very Metal riff oriented. I dunno what these guys are thinking. I mean, it's heavy without actually feeling heavy. It's loud but feels soft. The screams have no anger or conviction. It's about as intense as Trent Reznor getting electrocuted while shaving with his electric razor in the shower.
Ancient Wisdom - A god like Inferno (Prosthetic)
Ahh! Forgot I ain't reviewing Prosthetic stuff anymore. Why? Well this shit is a perfect example! If you need a sex change, don't spend any money, just listen to this for 5 minutes.
Fear Factory - The Industrialist (Candlelight)
Uh oh, not this band. Do I have to? Ah shit, who am I kidding - I can't wait to see how shitty this is! Let's see - well thanks guys, for including the actual musical genre you are playing within your album title! Now I don't have to guess what to call this wanna be Ministry/Biohazard/Machine Head stuff. I have to admit, the first song sounds kinda cool for a minute - it's kinda like a sound splicing jerk off session. Very well produced. But even after hearing the most triggered out clickity clack double bass on technical Death Metal albums, this still manages to out click the clickiest of em. My little computer speakers are actually managing to squeeze out a bass drum CLICK that hurts my ear. Still, I almost liked this till the horrible Creed vocals came in (or emo or whatever dumb vocals you wanna call it) This is not total shit - just mostly shit. And what is good is a 2nd or 3rd rate immitation of something else.
Ihsahn - Eremita (Candlelight)
Oh boy, here we go! So Emperor guy is back with his Depeche Mode influenced Black Metal. Starts out all Depeche Mode Black Metal, then gets all emo melodic for the chorus. Actually, sounds kinda like the melodic vocals in Opeth. I can't tell the difference between these awful singers who think that they are good because they are actually singing notes insead of growling. I mean, I applaud the effort - but it just sounds so watered down to my ears. It's like pop music that really thinks it is deep and artistic. Maybe it is, but sounds like crap to me! Parts are cool, but why they wanna combine the sounds they do is beyond me. Alice in Chains one Minute, Maralyn Manson the Next, and finally, a mandatory nod to Depeche Mode every couple minutes so those people with lots of eyeliner and hair products don't get alienated.
Six Feet Under - Undead (Metal Blade)
The original singer of Cannibal Corpse is back, and he's armed with what looks like completely different band members than were originally in the band. Anyways, initially this sounds much more typical Death Metal to me than the mid tempo stuff I know them for. But then, I never paid tons of attention to this band because they are always just not that exciting to me. Maybe it's just me, but it kinda sounds like they are trying to sound like Cannibal Corpse. And not just old Cannibal Corpse. Lots of blast beats and "nununununananananunununnininin" scary "your in deep shit" riffs. So far, I have to say this may be the best I have heard from this band! It doesn't sound exactly like Cannibal Corpse, but it's got all the same ingredients I like about the old stuff. Old formula, new band. Vocals are kinda strange. I mean what the hell can Chris really do with his voice but try to sound the same? He doesn't sound the same anymore but he sounds good. If you like old school Death Metal, I would say this is worth checking out. Oh, "Blood on my Hands" is not a Morbid Angel cover. It's a good sludger of a doom death tune.
Sleep - Dopesmoker (Southern Lord)
This album came out in 1999 or something. I don't know why everyone is acting like it just came out. Yeah, it was shelved for a while and put back and taken off and blah blah everyone knows the story (or some form of it). Anyways, it's been re-issued at least twice but I guess this is the one the labels really wanna cash in on. As far as the music - well I have listened to this for many years, because as I said, it came out like 13 years ago or something. I guess I see this album more as "High on Fire's" first album. Because it's basically a long ass droned out version of the first High on Fire, which I actually liked because it was pretty heavy and different in its' own way. The thing about Dopesmoker is that it always sounds awesome for like 3, 5, 10 minutes. But it always wears off. The Melvins knew how to really hammer it home way too long, but then pull back and throw something random in just to fuck with you. This is kinda like the heaviest Melvins without all the brains and twice as much weed. It's a drone, flat out. It gets old for me, but if you like the drone sludge out fest, it really doesn't get any better and I'd say this has to be one of the first bands to really popularize it. But I ain't an expert Mr Noise Drone Elitist. Anyone seen my Master of Reality CD anywhere???
Strong Intention - Razorblade Express (Patac)
This is that grinding Eyehategod meets Brutal Truth sorta stuff. I hate to use the word generic here because these guys seem like cool fellows that I would probably get along with, but I dunno what else to call completely unoriginal stuff like this. It's done well. Very harsh yet heavy. I like the production. Live this would be fun, especially on the right kinds of substances and with the right beverages ingested. It just bums me out that this kinda music is so trendy now and to me it was never meant to be blasted in some huge venue, it was meant to live and die in sweaty dirty punk rock warehouses. Not saying these guys are on that trendy bandwagon, but I'm sure they wouldn't jump off if that bus rolled up. I'm sure it is not their intention to break new ground here. And it's not my intension to force myself to like it. It's good, just real unoriginal and not really what I dig at the moment. But if that's what yer into go for it bro.