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7 reviews/ratings
REPULSION - Horrified Grindcore | review permalink
ISIS - Panopticon Atmospheric Sludge Metal | review permalink
KREATOR - Terrible Certainty Thrash Metal | review permalink
ISIS - Oceanic Atmospheric Sludge Metal | review permalink
VOIVOD - Dimension Hatröss Technical Thrash Metal | review permalink
SLAYER - Reign in Blood Thrash Metal | review permalink
DREAM THEATER - Metropolis, Part 2: Scenes From a Memory Progressive Metal | review permalink

Metal Genre Nb. Rated Avg. rating
1 Atmospheric Sludge Metal 2 4.75
2 Thrash Metal 2 3.75
3 Grindcore 1 5.00
4 Progressive Metal 1 0.50
5 Technical Thrash Metal 1 4.50

Latest Albums Reviews

DREAM THEATER Metropolis, Part 2: Scenes From a Memory

Album · 1999 · Progressive Metal
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When you suck the soul out of music and inject pure liquid cheese this is what you get. I gave this band and this album a chance, against every fibre of my being I had to battle to force myself to listen objectively and form an unbiased opinion.

I couldn't do it, I couldn't make it through they are my musical kryptonite. In my holy church of music they are satan himself rampaging, killing, raping - they are the one band above all others I love to hate.

Where to begin, James LaBrie's vocals sounds like a piece of wilted lettuce. The keyboards sound like early 90's MIDI sounds straight out of an old PC game (not in the good way either). I mean these guys have sold millions of albums so they MUST have enough money to afford some decent synths and keyboards but instead they CHOOSE to use awful tacky ones. And then there is the loathsome John Petrucci who when he's not doing some awful thug chug riffing is doing some ultra-lame lightspeed sweep picking solo. On the plus side the other guys aren't so offensive. Mike Portnoy is alright I guess, just a boring Neil Peart wannabe and then there's that bassist guy who doesn't do a lot.

The instrumental track 'dances of eternity' is a great example of why I think this band are awful. Sure technical and progressive can be great but this is just forced and completely misguided. I mean pianee breakdowns followed by a shred solo, followed by a bass solo followed by 2 dozen riffs that don't flow into each other and make no sense? - seriously, did they teach you that at Berklee? All it needed was LaBrie to come in with some girly man vocals and it would probably be my most hated track of all time.

I am entirely unapologetic about hating this band and this release. Every good music fan needs one band they can truly loathe and sit back and laugh at every now and again.

If you don't love cheesy music then avoid this at all costs.

VOIVOD Dimension Hatröss

Album · 1988 · Technical Thrash Metal
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I'm a big fan of bands like Voivod that have a traceable trajectory of musical development from album to album. Dimension Hatross is the pivotal album in the Voivod catalog that marks the transition essentially from tech thrash into prog metal territory. The speed and intensity of killing technology has morphed into machine like technicality, increased melodic focus and catchier more intelligent song writing.

And wow! What song writing! So rarely does a riff or part of a song come along that is so good that it makes me wonder how the band wrote it and how I can write something like it. After about the 4th listen i realized that pretty much every song on this album has a moment like this, the solo in 'chaosmongers', the 'chorus' in 'macrosolutions to mega problems', the brooding minor harmonised guitar build up in 'pyschic vacuum' - it's all realised potential and artistic vision (except maybe the pretty awful batman themesong cover at the end haha).

The one thing I love above all else about this band is that they're just so unique and identifiable. However this is also one of the things that makes them a bit difficult to listen to, you don't really get many reference points for comparison to aid in digestion. It took me quite a few listens to get this album and I'm already a big fan of killing technology and nothingface so a decent investment of time is needed to fully appreciate - but it's well worth it if you know what you're getting into.

ISIS Panopticon

Album · 2004 · Atmospheric Sludge Metal
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A good friend of mine introduced me to this band long before I was ready for them and told me a lot about this piece of music. One of the things that stuck with me was how he said that a lot of people had written to the band to tell them how this album helped them kick their heroin addiction. At face value I found it strange and didn't quite understand what it meant.

Five years down the track armed with broader tastes and an open mind I popped this sucker on, and now I understand what my friend was talking about.

Panopticon would be an album of juxtaposed styles if it wasn't so homogeneous and well written. Depressive sludge metal riffing gives way to spacey dream like post-rock textures frequently and it seems so natural and unlaboured that you don't give it a second thought save to enjoy it. I mentioned the word 'depressive' here and it is probably the most accurate descriptor you could give this album. I don't take that word lightly, I haven't really listened to a record that nails the depression vibe as well as this one - helpless, heavy, tender and with the slightest hint of hope.

This album is definitely an acquired taste, sludge, doom and stoner will always be that way. Do not let that detract from the wonders of this album, albums this cohesive, deep and meaningful are rare delights that should be cherished.


Album · 1989 · Grindcore
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One of the earliest and still one of the best grindcore releases of all time.

Horrified is crusty, noisy, fast, brutal and straight to the point, they tick all the boxes as far as grind goes but really when you have riffs this good that stuff doesn't even really matter. The riffs not only catchy but are capable of generating extra intensity from the songs when it doesn't seem like they could get more intense. Furthermore the slow songs and parts of songs which would usually be the downers on an extreme metal album are fantastic, the breakdown in the title track is a great example.

I can't imagine what it would have been like seeing these guys in 1986, at a time when thrash was the benchmark for extreme metal these guys rendered most of those bands redundant (or at least impotent). The only thing I don't like about this album is that more people don't know about it.

The ultimate measure of how good an extreme metal album is for me is how memorable and catchy it is. With 'hit singles' like 'radiation sickness' and 'horrified' and the sing along chorus of 'maggots in your coffin' ("you're rotting, maggots in your coffin!") this is as good as it gets for grind.

ISIS Oceanic

Album · 2002 · Atmospheric Sludge Metal
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As far as post-metal goes Isis are the be all and end all of the genre, no one really does it as good as they do and travels along the same sonic wavelength. That said I can't give this album 5 stars as it just doesn't live up to the masterpiece that is Panopticon.

Oceanic possesses a lot of the same dynamic qualities and intelligent riffing as Panopticon but the execution isn't quite mastered, the songs don't flow quite as well and it doesn't feel like as much of a journey as the latter. All that being said Oceanic certainly has it's moments with the epic 10 minute crescendo track 'Weight' complete with trip-hop-esque female chillout vocals is a definite highlight.

A fine release indeed but ultimately destined to live in the shadow of it's older more handsome brother Panopticon.

Latest Forum Topic Posts

  • Posted more than 2 years ago in I can't stand Slayer
    I agree to an extent with the original post.They're certainly mediocre, they only have one riff, play the worst solos in all of metal and are hopelessly one dimensional.They're just considered legendary because they're popular and accessible and those factors blow things out of proportion. There were dozens of bands around at the same time that had better riffs, better vocals and proper guitar solos. Beekeeper2010-04-24 01:35:23
  • Posted more than 2 years ago in Mastodon, Between the Buried and Me & Baroness
    BTBAM - metalcore, passMastodon - they were great a few years ago when I saw them, I saw them again this year and they played the entirety of crack the skye. Unfortunately crack the skye isn't anywhere near as good as their earlier material so it was a pretty mediocre performance.Baroness - heard they were amazing live
  • Posted more than 2 years ago in Primus
    Primus aren't particularly avant at all - they have fairly conventional song structures and instrumentation. Alt metal would be a perfect fit. Beekeeper2010-04-16 01:29:39


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