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"Killing on Adrenaline" is the album that introduced me and initially turned me off to Dying Fetus. Out of all the Dying Fetus album's I own, this is easily the worst one and is my least favorite.
Musically the band does a good job on "Killing on Adrenaline," and I don't really have a problem with it. The guitars at times play a slow and somewhat technical style like on "Procreate the Malformed," and "Absolute Defiance." Other times they play faster, more grind sounding riffs like on "Fornication Terrorist," "Intentional Manslaughter," and "Kill Your Mother/Rape Your Dog." The band is good at varying how they compose their music, which sounds like a mix of some tech death, grindcore, and a teeny tiny bit of hip-hop.
The hip-hop influence can be seen throughout this, and other Dying Fetus releases, and really isn't enough to attach the "wigger" label to John Gallagher. As far as "Killing on Adrenaline" goes, the tracks "Judgement Day," "Killing on Adrenaline," and others have a miniscule amount of a hip-hop influence. Not just in the instrumentation, but to a certan extent the delivery style of John Gallagher. John Gallaghers guttural, animal like growls are what you'd expect from a death metal vocalist. But to a very small extent, it almost, almost being the keyword, sounds like the lyrics are being rapped, but not enough to accuse the band of being nu-metal or attaching the "wigger" label.
The drumming leaves much to be desired on this album. The drumming is best during the album's faster moments, like on the opening track. During the slower moments, it almost seems as if Kevin Talley's talent is wasted. Also, due to the album's horrible production, the drumming is almost inaudible at times, and the bass might as well not even be on the album. The production is simply awful, and comes damn near close to making the album unbearable to listen to. But even the production is only part of why I don't like the album.
It has a bland, uninspired feel to it. It's as if the band put all the work into writting the music but like the Tin Man from The Wizard of Oz, forgot to give it a heart and soul. It sounds lifeless and boring, and lacks energy.
It's a decent release but it could've been much better than the final product turned out to be.
Nearly every night, when I'm on the bus home, I'm surrounded by imbeciles. Loud, noisy pricks who carelessly shove me, the obviously pissed-off long haired guy listening to his iPod. I sit there silently, contemplating how nice it would be to jump up, throw one of the bastards to the floor and stamp on their head till I hear a crunch. However, I have a lovely blend of brutal death metal that I can immerse myself in while I sit there, to help satisfy my blood thirst. In most situations, I turn to this band, and in particular, this album.
Killing On Adrenaline. I was introduced to this album by a friend who told me about a band called "Dying Fetus" who have this "fucking funny" song called "Kill Your Mother, Rape Your Dog”. I instantly imagined some sort of gore-grind band whose song names include genitalia and various forms of butchery. Well, that night I listened to the song, and it seemed that my initial presumption was correct. I noted that the songs were short-length and had standard grind vocals, fast tempo, and shredding guitar. It sounded like a generic grind-core band. I purchased the album, “Killing on Adrenaline" and pressed play on the opening track, “Killing on Adrenaline". From there, I was assaulted, violated, and let’s face it - molested, by a barrage of absolute brutal-death-grind bliss, with strong vocals, brilliant drumming and great recording, capturing the savage-ness that is Dying Fetus.
Something that surprised me about this album however, was how different Dying Fetus sounded from other death metal acts. The first few tracks on the album had a lot more to offer than mere speed and brutality. Songs such as "Procreate the Malformed" and "Fornication Terrorist" (brilliant song title by the way), surprised me as I listened them. The diversity of the guitar riffs, the tempo changes, the solid drumming by Kevin Talley, and the various vocal styles (courtesy of front-man John Gallagher and bassist Jason Netherton), all came together to form some sort of crazed technical-brutal-death-grind sound that sounded incredible.
As the album progressed, there was a great variety of song structures. It was great going from the speed driven track "Kill Your Mother, Rape Your Dog" straight to the slow, heavy "Absolute Defiance" for some much enjoyable head banging.
I’ve never had much of an opinion of the lyrics, mainly because song themes are not a major thing I judge in a band. But I do find it surprising, and mildly funny, that a band called "Dying Fetus" write songs that have political themes. Surprisingly, the song "Kill Your Mother, Rape Your Dog" is not a mediocre porn/gore-grind song, but a song with lyrics detailing the bands hatred for music corporations and mainstream bands. Unexpected, but still a valid expression from a bunch of metal-heads.
Since falling in love with this album, I have built my Fetus collection, managing to get my hands on every major release. They continue to impress me with their trademark sound; especially in their later release "Destroy the Opposition" with the track “Praise the Lord (Opium of the Masses)”. "Killing on Adrenaline" still remains my favourite album, because I believe it entirely captures the ferocity that is Dying Fetus.
The year was 1998, Suffocation was completely out of the picture, Cryptopsy may as well have been also given the lost of Lord Worm and the shift in character that they underwent, leaving a very present vacuum in the technical and brutal fringes of death metal, while the emergent black metal phenomenon was beginning to pick up steam. In keeping with all of this, it is easy to look at Dying Fetus as heroes of sorts for this style given their relatively consistent follow up in “Killing On Adrenaline”, which is a departure from their previous album in that it listens a little less like a grind album and more like death metal, and that the lyrics have shifted away from mere shock Cannibal Corpse style to the preferred subject of Six Feet Under, politics.
While some massive production issues still loom in this otherwise superior opus, this is more in line with the sort of album that is befitting of a band looking to sound more like themselves and less like a Cryptopsy clone. The technical elements are still very much present, along with the varied mixture of indecipherable guttural vocalizations and semi-intelligible hard core barks, but there is a heavier emphasis on mid paced breakdowns and even a few dragging slow sections that give the album a slightly sludge-like character at times. The downside is that this is the first peak at what would come to be the semi-rapped rhythmic vocal work that tends to make the accusations of seeking the crown of wiggerdom stick to John Gallagher like superglue.
For the most part, this album is at its best when the band stretches things out and explores all the possibilities within their highly varied style instrumentally. “Killing On Adrenaline” and “Fornication Terrorists” make a couple of solid manifestos of what this band is capable of when they mix things up a bit, and also contain some really kick ass shred sections that are actually fairly tasteful in comparison to the woeful overindulgence that permeates many post-2005 technical bands. There’s still some really goofy B.S. going on here that kind of brings things down a bit, not the least of which being the short and comical “Kill Your Mother/Rape Your Dog”, which gets dangerously close to Biohazard territory during the breakdown section and is so brief that it may as well not be on the album.
The good actually outweighs the bad on this album, but this still is somewhat caught in “hard to digest” territory. I have yet to understand why a lot of grind influenced bands during this time period and later insist on such an obnoxiously popping snare sound and an overly quiet drum production alongside an utterly overloud and mechanical guitar and bass sound. This is a little bit better than the previous album in that the guitar sound is somewhat crisper, but it still reeks of inferior equipment, even though at this point the band was probably upgrading their toolset. For anyone who really loved “None So Vile”, this is somewhat geared in that direction, but for the most part the late 90s was a pretty dry spot for brutal death metal and saw the rise of the melodic alternative, and this album reflects that trend.
Originally submitted to (www.metal-observer.com) on January 30, 2011.
This is Dying Fetus' first good album, which is a pretty remarkable accomplishment considering the enormous amount of flaws it has to overcome to be decent. The production is still awful, with almost nothing but bass and no dynamic range at all and an unbelievably awful guitar tone, John Gallagher's vocals are still almost laughably hit or miss, and at under 35 minutes the album still feels like it takes a century to end, but somehow 'Killing On Adrenaline' still manages to be a net win for the band by virtue of a handful of good decisions that manage to narrowly outweigh all the crap the band is saddled with.
For instance, does anyone actually like Dying Fetus during their blast/technical death riff segments? They're almost universally terrible because the band can't write a memorable tech riff to save their lives and those sections nearly always come off as a series of random sweeps on guitar and pointless blasting only there to artificially inflate the running time of the song. Everyone who listens to Dying Fetus listens for one thing: the grooves. When the band is willing to slow itself down (which is thankfully pretty often on this release) or even just resist the temptation to blast, the songwriting is extremely strong and memorable. When the thuggish hardcore guitar interacts properly with the Jungle Rot-style syncopated drumming, it just works beautifully; when you get down to it, Dying Fetus is a hardcore band in death metal clothing, and the closer they get to the former genre, the clearer it is where their skills lie.
The division between good and bad on this album is pretty strict so honestly it's not a very smooth listen. You fade out during the crappy blast/tech sections and fade back in during the groove riffs; I don't know, turn on the TV when it's going fast or something because you won't be missing anything of note. Be sure to mute it as soon as a chug riff comes up, because those are almost painfully fantastic every time. Gallagher's vocals only occasionally work, but all the emphasis is on the instrumental performances anyway. It's surprisingly fun most of the time; it's certainly not Dying Fetus' greatest work, but it's the first time they managed to climb out of the bizarre quagmire of pseudo-mechanical tech death they were stuck in for so many years before.
If you really want to get the best Dying Fetus experience, grab this and the subsequent two full-lengths and you'll pretty much have everything that's necessary. This is the weakest of the band's good material but it's still enjoyable if you're a dumb thug like me. Ignore the dumb decisions and you're left with a pretty solid album overall.
I believe that Dying Fetus is one of the greatest death metal bands that there is. They have elements of more than just chug, chug, chug, death! They incorporate slow and fast parts, with difficult solos, drum parts, and deep, guttural vocals. I saw them once, and they put on an amazing show. They opened up for Cannibal Corpse and Necrophagist. Every band at that show was awesome, but I think they were one of the best. Kill Your Mother / Rape Your Dog is a classic track. Even though it is short, it is still very well put together, and well played.
The guitars on this CD are perfectly in tune, and no mistakes are made on the recordings. The riffs are difficult and the solos are intense and charging. Their songs are composed of many different parts/riffs. Just remembering them takes skill, let alone, singing while playing them.
The drums are pounding. They are a relentless source of energy for the songs. The piccolo snare cuts through the mix and gives you that real "Dying Fetus" sound. Every drum is recognizable, and the bass drum is clear and powerful. The drums are played very well, and with enough diversity and skill to keep your attention throughout the album.
Dying Fetus' vocals are always guttural. They keep it interesting by adding high pitched vocals by themselves, and over the top of the lows. The lyrics aren't what I had expected when I first read them, but then I realized that they just sing about whatever they want, and they can do that and not lose any fans, because they are an amazing band.
I give this album a 100 because it is simply astonishing. Everything sounds great and the songs obviously weren't just thrown together for the release. Dying Fetus is a great band for anyone who likes heavy, deep, and cool.
A band like Dying Fetus doesn't rely too heavily on vocals to make an impact. Of course, they do achieve something in the way of shock horror if you've never listened to death metal before this album, 'Killing On Adrenaline', but we're all accustomed to those guttural vocals that really cannot be called anything other than incoherent blasts of noise because that is what they are. The vocals, to me, seem to be a lot like the percussion element of Dying Fetus on this particular album. The vocals are restricted to short and sharp bursts of glory before they're fairly muted. The vocals are much the same. When they're used, they're not used that well.
Of course, they add to the stigma of death metal vocals, but not much more than that is provided by the vocals. This fact is quite odd considering Dying Fetus actually use two vocalists. One does the gut-wrenching growls, whilst the other is more coherent in sound. Though when you take into consideration the fact that bands like Dying Fetus, who provide lyrics of a slightly less refined nature than popular music acts, the vocals are fitting. Considering the early exploits of this American act were all about inflicting a sense of gore on to the audience, I think Dying Fetus have managed that pretty damn well.
Not only are the lyrics gory ...
"The face I'm beating with my fist is pulverized,
and turned to shit so all that's left when he is gone
is skin and blood and pulp and bone
this fucker thought that he could try and fuck with me,
no reason why, so now he got what he deserved
a coffin with his grave reserved."
... but so are the vocals. They remind you of horror films you've watched where someone is being slashed to pieces, and although sanity doesn't really suggest you should cheer when someone is mutilated, you do anyway. It's kind of what happens when you listen to this record. Even though the vocals can be considered quite humorous at times, you still find yourself headbanging along in tangent. Why? That would have to go down to Dying Fetus' grasp on the genre. This band has been around since the early 90's, so they've come to terms with what death metal fans want and in the earlier stages of their career, Dying Fetus actually provided that. Gore, mayhem and generally brutality, a word favoured by many death metal fans.
So, what makes this album, 'Killing On Adrenaline' brutal? Well, for starters, the title. It's a pretty sick concept to normal society, which is why genres like death metal are shunned away into darkness by the commercial masses. Other than the title and the obvious brutality of the lyrics which tend to range over a varied amount of subjects, from death to killing your mother and raping your dog, the instrumental side to Dying Fetus is action packed enough to be considered brutal. The fast flowing riffs, especially the solos, tend to turn the heat up quite quickly. The tempo of this album is generally quick, which adds to image of Dying Fetus. The percussion element, although muted in sections, is rather out there.
It's technical prowess is what keeps it from becoming another part of the blood ridden furniture. Fury driven blasts are coupled with lots of catchy grooves, much like the guitar element to Dying Fetus. It's this catchy nature that makes their music so accessible to the masses. The grooving side to Dying Fetus is a major plus. The tight riffs, executed with extreme precision are the main positive to take away from 'Killing On Adrenaline'. When the album tends to merge, the guitars, mainly anyway, act as the saving grace. 'We Are Your Enemy' and 'Absolute Defiance' are my top picks.
Anybody that calls themselves a death metal fan will find it hard to deny that the GALLAGHER/VOYLES/NETHETON/TALLEY era DYING FETUS was one of the strongest USDM bands of the late 90s. Although DESTROY THE OPPOSITION exceeded this album in both technical prowess and sales, KILLING ON ADRENILEN displays a more unique death metal style and has more consistently great songs.
Before I talk about how much this album rules my ass-pipe I must bring attention to one of the unique aspects of this album that are often ignored, THE HIP-HOP INFLUENCE! In a recent influence with Metal Maniacs, John Gallagher mentioned how his interest in early hip-hop groups like NWA sneaked into the music of DYING FETUS. So for you hip-hop hating death metal fans I say listen to the title track of this album, it sounds like suffocation raping the Beastie Boys, sorry. The other unique aspect of this band at the time was Jason Netherton's socially conscience lyrics, talking about the link between consumerism and anonymous sex is truly an anomaly for death-grind.
Fear not hip-hop haters! There is enough technical brutality to keep everyone happy. The title track immediately pulls you in with a catchy grinding riff that moves into a bouncy verse. From the start there is no denying the talent, he compliments every riff perfectly and his fills are absolutely mind boggling. The song ends with a killer afore mentioned Beastie Boy styled vocal trade off with F-BOMBS galore!
“Procreate the Malformed” leans more toward the hardcore influence but still has bouncy grooves. There is more time changes than the previous track and Gallagher’s ultra fast solos really shine in this song and the last riff is FUUUUUCKIN’ heavy.
“Fornication Terrorists” is my favorite song on the album it represents all that was great about DYING FETUS. The death metal technicality is mixed flawlessly with the hip-hop groove and the hardcore attitude. All four musicians shine on the song and Netherton unleashes his socialist views, lyrically this is the most politically upfront song. There is also a tasty melodic black metal tremolo riff to make the track extra memorable.
The other tracks are also excellent but I think you all understand how much this album rips. “Kill Your Mother/Rape Your Dog” is a short grind tune that is always good for a laugh(it's great that these guys didn’t take themselves TOO seriously). The final track “Intentional Manslaughter” may be the most hip-hop influenced song, brutality never mixed with bounce so well.
From album opener "Killing on Adrenaline" to the closing track "Intentional Manslaughter" my ears were pounded with ferocious, machine-like drumming (chock full of blasts, technical double bass patterns, gigantic drum fills, and groove). Kevin Talley is the man! (this album would be a 75 if the drumming wasn't this good lol) Guitar-wise, excellent, tight guitar work, with plenty of groove, melodys, and crunch. The slow break-down crunches (that would get a hardcore kid moving), the midpaced grooves, and the all out blast sections of riffwork, really show how goddamned good these axemen are. Vocals are very interesting: dual vocalists, one w/ more of a yell/mid range growls, and the other so guttural it sounds like a pig talking. The songs are all between 4-7 minutes, and there being 8 songs makes for a solid block of brutality. In addition, the songs themselves have good structure and flow like water downriver. The only downside is the production isn't the best, but bear through it....this album rules....everyone needs to check this out!
This album is a sonic, rape-like assault. Especially when you consider the fact that is was released in 1997/1997, it's insane. Kevin Talley's first album with the band, upon joining, he gave them new life. Classic Dying Fetus (the first two albums) was built mainly on mid-paced groove, with only a few songs on pure blastality (1997 and after). The riffs are very good, while not as heavy as early Fetus, they are a little melodic. The vocals are still the same as early Fetus screamed and "sick" guttural vocals. I can't stress the Kevin Talley presence enough on this album, because as I said before, he gave this band new life with his blasting and ultra-tech fills, which enabled the band to take their songs well over five minutes without boring the listener like song bands. Also: They get points for being the biggest Maryland DM band ever! Get this album and don't even think about getting STOP AT EVERYTHING...er, I mean Stop at Nothing.