Dapper Dan Man…

March 20, 2010

Powerplay reviews – March issue

Obliteration

“Nekropsalms”

Genre: Death Metal

Label: Fysisk Format

Nicke Andersson, Entombed’s former drummer and one of the figure heads of the early Scandinavian death metal scene was quoted saying in a Swedish magazine a few years back that the best death metal was made in the period of 85-89. He’d absolutely love Obliteration, a young Norwegian band that has taken all the best parts of the American and Swedish old school, and pays homage to that era by delivering another gem.

After a good debut the band have now developed their dusty old sound even more- along with the raw and sloppy death metal there is a new ingredient, a slow and doomy psychedelia. Listen to “Catacombs of Horror” for proof of a slightly cosmic vibe among the lurching riffs, or “The Spawn of a Dying Kind” for an almost stoner-like atmosphere.

A song like “Ingesting Death” has that “Scream Bloody Gore”- like griminess but the slow parts bring to mind Autopsy and that particular brand of sludgy death they specialized in. Here is the beauty- Obliteration have managed to take the best from that genre and put their own twist on it. “Nekropsalms” is miles above any melodic death metal release of any year.

Rating:7


Elvis Jackson

“Against the Gravity”

Genre: Pop-Punk/ Ska

Label: Antstreet Records

This melodic punk group from Slovenia sounds so blatantly American that they will probably end up on a soundtrack to a college film in the very near future. “Against the Gravity” is quite possibly the sunniest, most feel-good recording so far this year- fans of this genre will no doubt enjoy beach parties while this is playing in the background.

It is difficult to be too be negative about this kind of uplifting melodic punk; it may not be original but it is played with competence and does put a smile on your face. What you get is the usual fast-paced songs with infectious choruses along with mellow ska/ reggae tunes like “Dry Your Tears”. Billy Gould (Faith No More) has done a great job with the production and this is a worthwhile investment for fans of cheerful punk to enjoy on a sunny day with a cold beer.

Rating:5


Blue Origin

“The Prism” EP

Genre: Heavy Metal

Label: Self-Released

One of the more striking things while listening to this mini-album by Blue Origin is how good the sound is, aside from the music itself being of high quality. The Stoke band are as yet unsigned but “The Prism” does not sound like the work of novices and also boasts a great production.

In a climate of extreme metal and off-the-cuff sounds, Blue Origin stick to the traditions and play riff-heavy classic heavy metal and do it with style. The songs are as heavy as they are catchy- a piece like “Darkside” is instantly memorable as are the following three and the bluesy vocals really enrich the songs.

It remains to be seen if the same quality can be delivered across an entire full-length album but “The Prism” is strong enough to make you believe it.

Rating: 6

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