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Nothing new, but occasionally very catchy - 83%

MikeyC, February 17th, 2007

“Technologies” is the first album from these Australian death metallers. I’m from Australia, and our country isn’t well-known for having many good heavy bands (seeing as we only have about 20 million people!). But occasionally we will bring out something that will take the world by storm. While Devolved haven’t been groundbreaking in any way, this album is decent death metal.

The album kicks off with “Distorted”. If you weren’t impressed by this song when it ends, don’t bother listening to anything else on the album. It is one of the better tracks on the album, and all of the songs, with the exception of the below-average “Functional Conflict”, have a similar structure. It has catchy vocals, nice thrashy drumming, and a few tempo changes. A nice riff comes in at :54, which will have your head banging, then a “fake” ending, or an extended silence, or whatever you want to call it, at 1:11, which actually fits the music and vocals. After being bombarded with vocals, from around 2:00 until the end is a nice riff with light guitars over some powerful drumming, full of double kick action.

Now, personally, I hate music that has heaps of vocals in it. I think it’s tasteless, and serves as an insult to any decent riff that might have been good on it’s own. With “Technologies”, I think I can make an exception. I really like Nik Carpenter’s vocal style – harsh yelling with hints of metalcore, but not in a bad way. Plus the lyrical content of machines/the future/technology/human downfall doesn’t do it any harm either.

Unfortunately, the album has some flaws. On most songs, the singing will stop, and some soft voice will come in. This almost always brings the flow of a song to an abrupt halt, leaving the song to be more split-up/fractured than it should be. The song “Functional Conflict” is a complete throw-away and should be avoided. It’s a song mostly filled with a bass guitar riff that doesn’t go anywhere, and a soft voice comes in later. A filler track at best. The drumming is very technical and tight, but it can get predictable, as he uses a snare-heavy thrash beat on most songs. Not all the time, but you will notice it when it comes up.

With that said, I’m not giving the album an 83 for it’s flaws. There are plenty of memorable and ultra-catchy sections. “Distorted” is a big highlight. From 2:16 on “Fallen Cities” is very good, similar to that at 2:28 on “Second Face”, using the vocals and music rhythmic patterns to good use. The opening riff to “Emergence” can’t be denied either. There are plenty more sections that could be worth mentioning, but these are good enough.

So, with obvious flaws, this album could’ve been better, but the plethora of catchy sections scattered throughout the album cancel it out, making the album very enjoyable indeed. As long as you avoid “Functional Conflict”, you will find a decent death metal album.

Best tracks: Distorted, Second Face, Adapt, Fallen Cities, Emergence