Thursday, April 26, 2012

Sheep in wolves clothing...

...should still be slaughtered.

I just deleted an album I was about to review by a band called 7 Horns 7Eyes after finding out they are a christian band. While they do play a very melodic and somewhat technical brand of death metal sometimes along the lines of older Meshuggah, there was something missing from the music which diminished it heaviness and kept it from being dark despite the atmosphere. Now I know. I take offense at Metal Sucks for purposefully suppressing this, I inquired with the site as to why this occurred though I suspect the label was trying to sneak that fact past the mainstream metal audience . 

I  can't personally compromise my writing to condone christian metal,  because of ...
1. my own personal beliefs which I only elude to, so I feel out of the same respect I give not preach my faith , the same consideration should be given to me from christians, hindus, whomever , though it should be noted christians are notorious proselytizers.I  myself don't feel the need to grand stand or defend my belief system because I'm secure in, those who feel the need too constantly defend and their debate are only trying to convince themselves.
2- this blog is called Abysmal Hymns...so my mission statement is to cover heavy and dark, I will let something like Swans slide by because even though they aren't heavy in the metal sense they are more than dark enough to make the cut and you better believe Dead Can Dance's show will also be reviewed on here. So we are looking for those who sing into the abyss, if that current isn't your thing you don't have to read this. After all it is MY blog so I produce it as i see fit you don't like it ...fuck you, it's not up for debate.

I am I saying Christians shouldn't make metal...well I suppose if you are playing the neutral ground and look at the whole thing like you are just making the musical equivalent of horror movie , then thats fine as long as you aren't being vocal about your beliefs , the challenge is can you "fake the funk" so to speak. Dave Mustaine can't and every Megadeth album after "rust in peace" has felt thin. Yes count down to extinction I'm looking at you. However Tom from Slayer can scream ...god hates us all with conviction, but he's catholic and do they even count? Kinda like being Jewish you are born into the ritual of it, they practice but how much o it do they believe? And can't say many catholics have preaced to me on the train.
so needless to say don't wait around for reviews of  Demon Hunter or Living Sacrafice either.

Marilyn Manson : Born Villain

O.k, while I do have a passing interest in Manson, his 09 album " the high end of low " was pretty horrid, the most bland and boring piece of work he could have mustered.So I approach this album wondering what his relevance in  2012 might be , as his brand of industrial alt-rock went the way of the dinosaur in 2003 if we are being generous, " Eat me Drink me" found it's place in the electro-rock niche of bands like the Killers, just with a darker tone and edge. However , on that tour , Manson seemed disinterested to be on stage and the show as a whole dragged.
While not metal" Born Villain" is harder than eat me drink me, though perhaps not as well written. The albums first two songs kick off the proceedings with sleazy beat driven rock, though both punches are thrown with little muscle behind them. The 3rd track "Pistol Whipped" is silly, it sounds like a Peaches b-side. While Twiggy is back in the band, this song makes it obvious Tim Skold's production skills are lacking, and I'm surprised Chris Vrenna let something like this be recorded, but he did co-produce " high end..." .
Things darken up a bit for " Underneath the Path of Misery" a song whose chorus rocks pretty well. Manson's delivery in the verses is not quite convincing. 8 albums in an artist who is not say David Bowie is likely to lose momentum , even Alice Cooper had well ...every thing from ''Trash" on...so we are just living long enough to see the decline of Mr. Manson, but even Coopers "Feed My Frankenstein" has more charge to it's shock rock that some of this. Sure when "Portrait of an American Family " out It was a cross between Faster Pussycat and White Zombie and I was o.k with it as I had been a pretty big W.A.S.P fan at one time.
''The Gardener " though comes across as his "Clones"  and makes me wonder if this is his idea of the Joy Division influence he mentioned in interviews earlier in the year. Its not a bad song, just more Gary Numan than anticipated.The Numan tribute continues to good effect on " Children of Cain" , this seems the direction Manson is best served. Sure even on the albums better moments there's a lot of recycling going on, but Manson has been working off the creepy verse to arena rock chorus formula for some time. This go around due to Twiggy there are lots of thumping bass intros, some times this evolves into something more interesting than others. While this was the case with " high end of low" it's more apparent here that he has nothing to say or desire behind the words he does muster. The disdain in the lyrics of " eat me drink me " carried more emotional weight than the lyrical equivalent of going through the motions.I imagine the " Born Villain" single would be getting any more air play if the label had pushed the  closing cover of " You're so Vain" first.  Though none of these songs are begging to make it from my hard drive to Ipod,  I think  if given the time to grow on me I might be able to round this albums score up to a 6 but as it stand I have to give this a
5.5  only for fans wanting to recapture the feeling of  Middle School.