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I'll be as upfront as possible - Prizm of Hate is likely to be the weirdest black metal album that you or I will probably ever hear in our lifetimes. You could read every single online review on it that you can find and you still won't be properly prepared for what the music sounds like. I'm not kidding or exaggerating: this makes Deathspell Omega sound like an amalgamation of all the $3 shit you see for sale in distros' clearance sections. Whether you like this musically or not (you're probably not retarded like me, so I'd put my money on the latter), I think you'll be able to agree that there has been no metal band even remotely like this ever before.
I'm beginning to realise that the most genre-defying music is not inspired by years of musical knowledge and a fundamental understanding of how music is supposed to work, but rather the complete opposite - complete ignorance and attempts to create music without fully understanding how to do so. Now don't get me wrong, I'm not going to start some pretentious rant about how outsider music is the purest form of art, but I think it's generally accepted to most that you can listen to The Shaggs and agree that they sound much stranger than bands of perceived virtuosos with years of musical experience and formal training, such as, say, Opeth. I relate Jewicide to this because it sounds like black metal based on a description of black metal, rather than someone listening to the genre and taking their own spin on it. I mean, I'm sure the creator of Prizm of Hate has heard black metal at some point in his life, considering that they knew enough about it to determine that there was a sect within it devoted to National Socialism, but it sounds as if he heard maybe a few select bands and left it at that. There is simply no way that someone with years of experience in the black metal scene could even begin to think of conjuring something this primitive, this autistic, this innocently naïve.
I suppose the man behind Jewicide has heard enough of typical NSBM to determine that the subgenre typically goes for an anthemic, marching sort of pace rather than a crawling, mid-paced, or blast-heavy approach. But it's with that familiar element of NSBM that the similarities to any other band on Earth diminish - Jewicide have a set of elements (primarily in their guitars) that separate them from practically any standards set by black metal in the past. I suppose that retrospectively this sounds a bit like the South Korean band Infinite Hatred in its guitar tone, and the droning riffs sometimes bring to mind some of the Israeli Animus's work, but this is still so wholly unique, existing in its own little world, that frankly comparing it to other bands' music feels a bit unfair.
The main reason that this album is so otherworldly is the guitars. The most immediately upfront sonic element in the listener's ears is a thin, static, and unwavering hiss which is ever-present in the mix (but not particularly harsh or disruptive), but a bit further down lie the guitars (and a bit further than that, the bass), which have this ever-present sort of depth and echo to them. This depth is further accentuated by occasional synth use, in which a choir voice mixes with the guitar and follows it around like a rhythm guitar. Normally this would sound cheesy as hell, but in Jewicide's case the guitars and synths occupy the same sonic space and mesh together, instead of clashing awkwardly and battling for dominance within the mix. The end result is that the guitars are even more ethereal than the album's average half the time, and while this overall depth of tone would be an oddity easily overlooked if the riffs were just Darkthrone or Immortal worship, they're certainly not - they're just as strange and atmospheric as the guitar tone utilised to demonstrate them. They alternate between twanged open notes to tremolos that are too fast and raw to distinguish from sustained whole notes, but both styles are unified in that they're all melodic in a disturbingly spacey, grandiose and atmospheric way. The riffs don't go for punch as much as they attempt to drown the listener in walls of sound, and for the most part they work - for a bedroom album, Prizm of Hate is pretty dense. While the album in general is pretty atmospheric even when compared to the entire spectrum of black metal, there's still a few moments where the oddity of it all passes completely out of the listener's conscious thought, and gives way to feelings of magnificence and beauty - take the riff in the middle of the title track, or the blastier parts of "Nightfury", or the awe-inspiring performance throughout "Sea of Fyre", or even that weird, prancy instrumental in the middle of the album which sounds like Christmas music mixed with the sort of demented carnival music that you imagine goes on inside a schizophrenic patient's head. Jewicide's odd guitar tone alone and unconventional riffing style are enough to, at the very least, keep you interested; but it's at moments like the aforementioned few where the band really starts to shine. It's at moments like those when Jewicide atmospherically reminds me a lot of Animus's album Poems for the Aching, Swords for the Hallucinating - listening to them, you feel as if the summation of the psychological reaction to every single human emotion is coursing through you at once, without any of it manifesting itself into a personally-felt feeling. It is the sensation of experiencing pure, undiluted beauty, and while it's admittedly stronger-felt on that Animus album, the fact that this album achieves such a mood of sheer wonder at all deserves to be noted, since I could count the other bands who have achieved it on one hand.
Unfortunately, where the guitars succeed at carving a wholly unique sound that belongs to Jewicide and only Jewicide, the rest of the musical elements don't do much to continue developing in that direction, which just reinforces my suspicions that the band just sort of stumbled across genius instead of consciously attempting to creating it. The vocals are another element for which comparisons to Animus can be made, in that they're recorded through an extremely sub-par microphone; but whereas Animus's vocals are thinner but retain fluctuations in tone and emphasis, Jewicide's vocals are actually pretty thick but delivered in an impish monotone rasp which is probably closer to a whisper than an outright screech. The other vocals here don't help much at all: vocal fry frog croaks appear from time to time, but they're certainly not deep or forceful enough to sound like anything death metal and come across as rather stupid; and "N.O.S. (National Order of Satan)" features some bizarrely laid-back, half-sung chants which sound about as unthreatening as you're probably imagining right now. While the vocals can be passed off as mediocre, much less can be said for the drums, which can only be detected in the music as a crash cymbal and a snare drum. The snare drum is undoubtedly the most egregious offender here, frankly sounding awful on levels previously unable to be comprehended by humans. The snare not only clacks as if it's ridiculously flat, and remains consistently off-time (and not in the endearing way, but the "this is becoming an active impediment to enjoying this music" way), but yes, when the band pick up to blast speed it sounds like a steam engine clanking down railroad tracks and releasing puffs of steam. It certainly doesn't help that its use constitutes over 90% of Prizm of Hate's audible drum beats, and in the end it renders the album's entire drum performance as noise, rubbish to be ignored in an effort to appreciate the riffs.
Again, I have to say that my preceding paragraphs really don't do the utter "wat" factor of Jewicide's music much justice, as it simply breaks every single musical standard that black metal has ever set for itself in a way that defies traditional description. For anyone involved in extreme metal, this is definitely a must-listen - whether you hear it and decide you adore it or despise it (again, it'll probably be the latter, but I personally feel that if another band were to ever cover this material but lay down some proper drum beats and improve the vocals, it would be an absolute masterpiece; and if I stumbled across a CD copy of this I'd eagerly buy it), this is simply one of those albums you must hear before you die. Even though racially and sexually I'm probably one of the people the artist was trying to persecute with his music, I'm probably Jewicide's biggest fan at this point; Prizm of Hate is some wonderfully primitive stuff that gives off vibes unlike those created by any other music on Earth. You seriously have to hear this to believe it.
Let me start off with what I like about this album. I love the cover art. The embossed, Iron Maiden-inspired logo and the corrupted Star of David logo atop a scene from space is very pleasing to the eyes and reminds me of countless metal albums from the 1980s. I also like... uh... that's pretty much the only good thing I can think of.
Now we get on to the bad stuff. Let's start with the drums. He plays these really haphazard mid-paced rhythms, he constantly goes off-beat, and when he tries to perform a blast beat he makes numerous mistakes. I suspect the drummer recorded his parts while drunk. Don't believe me? Listen to the song “Instrumental” and hear for yourself. Also, for some strange reason, the snare sounds like it doesn't belong to the rest of the drum kit. It sounds a bit louder than the other pieces of the kit, as though they took the snare recordings from a previous session and put it into the final mix. Hell, the production is so bad I can't even hear the other pieces of the kit.
Some of the guitars play some pretty decent riffs infused with a touch of melody and remind me a bit of the Blazebirth Hall, but the production is so bad it's hidden behind a cloud of fuzz and background noise. If they hired a professional to handle the production instead of trying to do it themselves, then they could have made the guitars shine. Just listen to the solo near the end of “Total Destruction and Complete Annihilation”. It's obvious they have the musical knowledge but they don't have the production knowledge.
The worst part of this album has to be the vocals. Someone never told him this important lesson: hoarse whispers are not a substitute for black metal rasps. If you're gonna be a black metal vocalist, you need to have the courage to rip out your vocal cords. If you only perform hoarse whispers, people are going to assume you still live in your parents' basement. Hoarse whispers are a real pet peeve of mine. If you're gonna make black metal, you gotta show some commitment. If you half-ass it by performing hoarse whispers, then it's an obvious sign you're not committed.
Overall, some of the guitar parts were pretty good, but the vocals, drums, and production utterly ruin the experience. Here's some advice the frontman should follow if he plans to produce a second album: stop it with the hoarse whispering and perform some real black metal vocals, hire a professional producer instead of handling it yourself, kick out your alcoholic drummer, and change the name of your band. Seriously, Jewicide? How old are you? 12?
It's pretty hard to describe the crappiness and the absolute lack of musicianship here. Nevertheless, I'll give it an honest try.
First of all, the production is absolutely horrible. It sounds like this guy (since this is a one man project) made a distortion pedal by modifying a walkman, or maybe even a vacuum cleaner, it's all a fair guess at this point, and simply recorded the rhythm section using an old tape recorder. Of course, he probably used the tape recorder's microphone to allow all sorts of background noises, you know, just to spice things up a bit. He then probably transfered it from a tape player to a computer. That about sums up the guitar sound. Vocals seem to have pretty much been done the same way.
As for drums, I honestly have no idea how one can accomplish that sound as it sounds really muddy and distant. It's like a snare drum sample was used as an entire drum kit, it's volume increasing and decreasing throughout the songs and echoing around. It's also off beat, snare is hit pretty randomly throughout the song and then simply echoed a couple of times. Truly a revolutionary approach, which, to my great pleasure, doesn't seem to be catching on.
Bass is inaudible. I assume it's somewhere in that white noise sounding cacophony which represents guitarwork, but then again, it might as well not be there at all. Anything's possible.
Then, to top off the mix, this guy added reverb effect on an entire mix, making it sound even more like white noise with distorted pig squealing on top of it.
Of course, I may be wrong about an entire process. This may have been done in an actual studio (what a dreadful thought), I was simply trying to describe this piece of quasimusical excrement as it sounds to me. This is as insulting to me as a musician as I'm sure it must be to the Jews. This guy should be euthanized, or at least neutered so he doesn't produce any offspring.
I'm not sure if this is a joke. But I'm going to review it as if it's a serious release ... and doing that will be quite the task. I’m also going to disregard the lyrical content, and hold no bias one way or the other for it.
Okay, so ... needless to say Jewicide is a National Socialist black metal one man project. What I'm led to believe is the drums - it's the slightly rhythmic clatter here, so I'm assuming it's supposed to be the drums, sounds nothing like any drum sound either real or programmed that I've ever heard. It sounds vaguely like a toy train going along it's tracks. I kid you not. There is a hit, and it echoes from one speaker to the other, and back again endlessly. Maybe this is the snare drum? There is no bass drum, no toms, no hi-hat, and absolutely no variation. And there is the same one cymbal being hit every measure of every song. Oh yeah, and sometimes it sounds like the "snare" is being hit completely randomly - again, I make no attempt at overblowing this. It sounds as if he's trying to make it sound as random, sloppy, incoherent as humanly possible. He really must be doing it on purpose, because albeit giving me no reason to not believe this is the most musically inept person on the face of the planet, I have to believe that no one can be that bad at keeping a straight beat.
So, the "drums" consist of some metallic clatter with enormous amounts of echo on it and a single cymbal. This "drumming" is what made the word ineptitude necessary in the English language. Seriously, this is the stupidest sounding thing I think I've ever heard - and I've heard a great deal of laughable avant-garde, asinine experimental, silly dark ambient, pathetic drug-induced music, yet this takes the cake for the greatest lack of understanding in any respect for what satisfies the ear.
Next, the guitar sound. It kind of sounds like static, at a few varying pitches. Want to hear what it sounds like? Plug a guitar into an amp set with the volume almost all the way down, and the distortion all the way up. Connect two distortion pedals, with the distortion and treble all the way up. Then run that out into one of those pocket sized portable amps with a 3" speaker, then throw a pillow over it. Then use a handheld voice recorder to record you playing two random powerchords. There you have it!
I can't even really describe what the guitar is playing - because I can't fucking hear it. Seriously.
The vocals sound decent. But who cares? No one will be able to get past the endless static of the guitar - or maybe it's not from the guitar, I don't know what's it's from. But it's there, it's loud, and it's piercing - and it honestly gave me an ear ache. Not to mention the random calamity of some stupid attempt at percussion, and guitars that sound like a cow being strangled.
This makes Immortal's demos, Moonblood, and the like sound excellent - and I am NOT exaggerating. It's really terrifying. You must have to have a masters degree in incompetence to be able to put out something this unpleasant to listen to. I'm not joking about it making my ears ache, it really did. This is without doubt the most unlistenable thing I’ve ever heard. And that’s saying quite a lot.
To the maker of this blasphemy upon art, music, and all of metal - consider SUicide.