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Solid, yet disappointing - 69%

SCMugen, May 11th, 2007

Job for a Cowboy's 2005 effort, the 'Doom' EP, was, although being completely slammed across the metal scene and in all of the reviews on this site, one of the better deathcore releases I heard so far, and one of my personal favorite releases in the -core area. While a lot of deathcore bands tried to pretend being death metal, Job for a Cowboy most certainly did not - they played some of the craziest music I ever heard, and they took their style to the absolute end.

But now, in 2007, after being signed to a major metal label, and just before starting to record their debut full-length album, they suddenly decided to change their musical direction. While most bands these days tend to go from the metal camp to a more -core style, Job for a Cowboy did the exact opposite: They went from absolute core to pure death metal, with no -core influence at all. Most people around the metal scene will be happy with this sort of decision, and I would too, but not when the band in question is Job for a Cowboy.

You see, the reason why I liked their "Doom" EP was that it was a completely nutty album. Each and every song on that EP had more groove than an entire album by Funk legend George Clinton, and each and every song was wackier than his hair! "Doom" was all about the groove, the crazy vocals, the heavy breakdowns. Now with "Gensis", they took out the groove, the vocals are limited to one type of growl only (compared to four different types on the previous record), the breakdowns are no more and they basically just lost their uniqueness, and now they sound like every other half-brutal death metal band.

It's not like it's a bad record. It just sounds to me like a step backwards instead of forward. The vocalist sounds like the guy from Beneath the Massacre (in both tone and style), the riffs also kinda sound like BtM, mixed with Decapitated and your random brutal death metal palm mute chugga-chugga riffs. The bass is just there to fill the void, and the drumming consists from a variety of blast beats and fills, but not much more than that. There are even some solos around, and a couple of annoying, pointless and ridiculously long intro tracks.

I'm not saying that going death metal means going backwards. But in this case, I'd much rather have a cool, crazy and unique deathcore record, than yet another solid-though-uninspiring conventional death metal album. And it is a solid record, it's just that there are bands that do this exact same kind of death metal, only better.