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Macabre...a very satirical extreme metal band that mocks sensitive subjects (mainly serial killers) and doesn't care who gets offended, much like Comedy Central's "South Park". But this takes it to a whole new level. The silliness is off the charts and it's all for fun. To do an entire concept album on Jeffrey Dahmer (one of the sickest people to ever walk the face of the earth) is not something that anyone could take seriously, no matter how die-hard of a music fan that they are.
Each song reflects on what part of Dahmer's life story it's reflecting on...sometimes. For example, "Grandmother's House" is about the times when Jeffrey was fulfilling his sick sexual desires behind his grandmother's back. The song is a fast and energetic skate punk track with nursery-rime-style lyrics. This fits in because it really does sound like it would be some kind of sick nursery rhyme. "Baptized" is about Jeffery letting Christianity into his life and being baptized. It sounds like some sort of song that would be played at a church when someone is being baptised, but featuring a distorted electric guitar.
Although sometimes, the music fits the satirical lyrics pretty well, sometimes it is completely unfitting for the sake of comedy. For example, "In The Army Now" is about Jeffrey's time in the army and being dishonorably discharged due to massive amounts of alcohol consumption. It sounds like something that would play at Chucky Cheese's during some little kid's birthday party. Sure, it has sort of a marching feeling, but that's present in some little kid's music, as well. I couldn't help but smile out of laughter when I listened to it, but it amused me quite a bit.
Some songs don't really talk about any event in Jeffery's life story. They just talk about the fact that he killed people. That doesn't mean that they're filler tracks, but they are just kind of joke songs, amusing ones at that. One example of this is "Jeffery Dahmer Blues", which is supposed to be one of Jeffery's victims singing a blues song about his fate. It's basically a joke song in the form of a blues track with heavily distorted, down-tuned guitar work. Another is "McDahmers", which paints the picture of Jeffrey being the owner of a fast food restaurant where the food is made out of the men that he killed. Nothing to do with the concept, just immature (and funny). These are the songs that you would listen to with friends when you want to get a good laugh.
There are two things that stand out to me the most on this album. One of those things are the lyrics. They tell Jeffrey's life story and put their own comedic spin on them. One of my favorite examples of this is when it talks about when a witness at his trial said that in school, he would roll on the ground and act like a clown. The lyrics create a little dance-metal track out of it.
"Rolling On The Ground!
Acting Like A Clown!
Let's All Do The Dahmer!"
I have tried doing the "Dahmer" myself during times of boredom. Another is when Jeffrey worked at a blood bank and was arrested for pulling his dick out in public.
"Drawing The Donated Blood
He Would Soon Be Arrested For Exposing His Pud
Blood Bank Blood Bank
Yeah! Blood Bank!"
The other thing that stands out to me about this album is the variation of the music. One minute, it's speed metal...then its hard rock...then its skate punk...then its children's birthday party music. This is why the album is difficult to describe as a whole, musically. I understand that this makes the album inconsistent, but that just adds on to the level of humor. If it was all one thing, it would eventually just get boring (not that the music is meant to be taken seriously, but you wouldn't enjoy it nearly as much). The only thing that remains the same on every track is that the guitars are always distorted, but they always play a different style.
This album sounds like something that Trey Parker and Matt Stone would write if they ever decided to get into music, and I feel like South Park fans would definitely enjoy it, as it's directed towards those who are looking for a good laugh and will love it, as well as those who are easily offended and will hate it. Sure, the music gets a little boring at times, but the variation in the songwriting usually keeps the listener interested. There isn't much to say about the direction of the album, other than sick humor, but hey, I could use a good laugh pretty much all the time. If you're looking for good musicianship and technicality, you won't find anything here, but if you're into humor and aren't easily offended, I would recommend that you invite some friends over and crank it up.
Macabre have definitely defined themselves in the genre of metal as murder metal, this release adds to it for sure. This whole album is about Jeffrey Dahmer, which is just awesome in so many ways. Not of course because he was a serial killer but just interesting how Macabre can pack 26 amazing songs about him into this album.
26 songs about the same person, might get boring? Hell no! This album has all the same ideas but the lyrics are genius. Every song seems to tell a snippet of the story behind Jeffrey Dahmer, and to a person who may find him interesting, just reading the lyrics can make your day. But I wouldn't just read the lyrics of course, listening to the songs get the point out even better.
The production quality of this album is by far probably the best sounding recording I have personally ever heard. It is just so crisp and clear and when a band is telling stories and things like that in their songs, this kind of production is needed. They definitely went the right way with this producer.
The songs on this album are for the most part pretty fast songs, with great melodies and breaks. My favorite track is actually the slowest song on the album, which is "Hitchhiker." The song "Hitchhiker" is almost like a giant breakdown but of course better. But if you like them fast then every other song on this album is definitely for you and is like all the rest of their songs off previous releases. One of the best things I can say about Macabre is the fact that even though a three piece band, they have some of the best musicians out there. Their drumming is absolutely amazing, his speed and precision really show on this album. The guitarist and singer are definitely a focal point on this release as well, the guitar riffs on the songs on this album are fantastic. I think Corporate Death really wanted to do something insanely heavy on this album and boy did he succeed, this is definitely Macabre's heaviest album that they have ever released.
Stand out tracks "Hitchhiker" Dog Guts" "Blood Bank" "In the Army Now," just to name a few, but they all are great!
Macabre is a pretty unique band in the death metal scene. They formed in the mid-80s, and have survived to this day without a single lineup change. They aren’t too well known, though, possibly because their material’s a bit goofy and their vocalist, Corporate Death, has a piercing scream that’s kind of hard to deal with at first. They also haven’t released many albums, with just 4 full-lengths and a handful of EPs since their debut in 1989. Still, they’re highly revered among those versed in their work, and it’s not hard to see why.
Dahmer was released on Halloween in 2000. Like all of their work, it’s about a serial killer, but this album was a first for Macabre in that it’s a concept album, not a collection of songs about different serial killers. Dahmer isn’t strictly a metal album, as Macabre dips a bit into hardcore punk quite a bit. The lyrics are another example of Macabre’s great black humor, and most songs don’t stick around long enough to get stale, as there are 26 tracks in just 52 minutes. A few songs stick out as filler (the 20-second “Media Circus” in particular- I correctly guessed its tune just from the title), but most are fairly solid. I thought that “Blood Bank,” “Drill Bit Lobotomy,” “McDahmer’s,” “Scrub a Dub Dub” and “Christopher Scarver” were the catchiest tunes on the album.
Most of the songs are played quite fast, although they do slow it down a bit for “Scrub a Dub Dub”. The songwriting dips from the “gory nursery rhyme parody” one too many times for my tastes, but all the songs are over quickly so nothing really drags. The musicianship is pretty good, with Corporate Death’s guitars and Nefarious’ bass being strong throughout, but I thought Dennis the Menace’s drumming was pretty workmanlike (with the exception of a few tracks). The production is quite good; producer Neil Kernon knew how to make the songs sound gritty without being muddy, and contributes a solo to the song “Jeffrey Dahmer Blues”. This is my favorite album in Macabre’s all-too-small catalogue, and I would recommend it to people who enjoy comedic metal, as well as bands who mix punk elements into metal well.
Originally posted at metal-jerks.com