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Success Will Write Apocalypse Across the Sky is a band I discovered in high school. Being a guy in his 20s now, I had given this album another listen since then and I was still impressed to say the least. The band deliver a crushing, technical sound which I think can be compared to the likes of Hour of Penance and The Kennedy Veil. The album comprises a good amount of tracks with funny, confusing titles and cute sound sample tracks placed in between.
Many of the riffs glide across between a lead and rhythm section which tend to play the same thing but still distinguishable that two guitars are indeed being played. Bass guitar isn't exactly audible albeit the drums are so high in the mix that the bass frequency is usually drowned out with the bass drum behind it, but in some songs such as "The Realization That Mankind Is Viral in Its Nature", the music will break leaving the bass guitar in the spotlight for a brief couple seconds. I noticed the bass is tuned way higher than most other death metal albums, maybe that's why my ears are unable to pinpoint where it is in the mix expecting for it to sound like how it should. Solos also come in on the fly and they're tasteful in one way or another. Adding something to the music than just wankery (check out "Cattle" for an example). You'll also get some chuggy moments in tracks such as "Agenda" and "Despot" which almost sound like something Suffocation would do in their mid 90s records.
Much of the album follows this same formula of just tremolo riffery and technicality until some interlude tracks or "Colossus" comes in. "Colossus" is a slow track, very doom-ish and brutal. Placed as one of the last handful of songs and sounds good for variety.
Vocals are your typical throaty growl, I'd have to say this guy sounds like Nergal in the early death metal days of Behemoth (i.e. the Satanica album) and he's usually very understandable most of the time. In most tracks you'll really feel the adrenaline in the tracks granted his voice faces into a whole angry vibe to go with the music. "Cattle" has him growling "OFF WITH THEIR HEADS!!!" in one passage of the riffs. Another favorite of mine is the massive "SHUT THE FUCK UP!!!" at the beginning of "Automated Oration and the Abolition of Silence". This dude roars like it's the end of the world.
This band apparently has a sample/keyboard player, but I don't ever hear her. Where is she? I hear something at the end of track one which has what sounds like samples but other than that I don't hear much of her unless what she does is somehow buried in the mix. Strange.
If you really love contemporary death metal, my big recommendation would be to at least look this album up on Spotify. It has so many impressive riffs and it actually doesn't get you bored by the fifth songs that most albums of this liking usually do. It actually sounds fresh. This thing is only 6 years old and still holds up as a worthy contender to what many bands in current death metal could and should do. If you love bands like Aborted, The Kennedy Veil, Fleshgod Apocalypse, late Job for a Cowboy and Hour of Penance, this has to be heard. That's all I can say. It's not the most groundbreaking thing in the world, nor is it the most impressive but it's solid to say the least. I wish this thing didn't go as overlooked as it did.
Best songs: "Cattle", "Automated Oration and the Abolition of Silence", "Colossus" and "The Tamagotchi Gesture"
Is it deathcore? I don’t know. Is it death metal/grindcore? I don’t know. Is it brutal? I don’t know. Is it one of the most horrible and annoying pieces of music ever recorded? You bet your sweet ass it is.
If one were to attempt to describe the sound of the racket that Success Will Write Apocalypse Across the Sky calls their material, it would follow as something like this: Take Despised Icon’s album, “The Ills of Modern Man”. Now make it twice as fast and make the technical parts twice as technical. Now remove the relief brought by the breakdowns, and to finish things off, remove any sense of purpose, catchiness or point from the music. Voila! Instant crap band!
To be more plain, the “music” contained on this irritating little disc is devoid of anything that would make anyone want to listen to it. There are no good parts. Not one section where you’ll be thinking, “hey, that’s a cool riff!” or “this drum pattern is awesome” or “the synthesis of the various parts of this music produces a feeling in me which makes me want to perform a series of motions know fondly as headbanging.” - it’s just a bunch of annoying noise that goes nowhere. This is beyond “technical wankery”, this is hell. Every second of this piece of garbage is crammed with some boring “brutal” staccato riff, tremolo riff, blasting drums and the forced vocals being screamed in your ears. It never ends, it never goes anywhere. Some might call it “relentless”, but it’s just annoying; it’s the equivalent of trying to sleep in on your one day off all week, while there’s a bird outside your window that won’t shut the fuck up.
Really, SWWAATS is clearly the product of the misguided youth of today, who feel that in order to be metal, the music has to be as fast, brutal, and noisy as possible. But this is a mess; it’s too technical and not substantial enough to be interesting and too plastic to be brutal. A massive failure.
In closing, this is an nauseating and worthless freakshow that offends at every turn and does not manage for even one second to be entertaining. And the band’s name is stupid as hell. Avoid even downloading.