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Cute. - 23%

mentalendoscopy, June 16th, 2010

Veil of Maya are one of the new "technical deathcore" bands. They utilize far more melodic riffing than standard deathcore bands, and are not beyond writing pseudo-intellectual lyrics so people will be "impressed" by their ability to vent such a high-minded theme through such aggressive music. As people are getting tired of the slow-paced, boring deathcore which covers up most of the genre, bands like Veil of Maya are becoming more and more prevalent. It's certainly not "offensive", in the sense that whenever this band is mentioned I feel the need to jump into a hate-filled tirade, explaining why this is the bane of everything metal stands for. It's certainly not "terrible", in the sense that I would rather slam a brick against my head in order to not remember anything about the genre. However, Veil of Maya, somewhere along the road, missed this point, and are subsequently a really fucking stupid band.

For the majority of the album, the guitarist is utilizing a mixture of At the Gates-esque riffs, Neurosis-esque leads, and Meshuggah-esque polyrhythms fashioned into breakdowns. The drummer is mostly inaudible other than his toms and his retarded double-bass, which is literally the loudest thing on the whole album. The singer performs the standard "barked" vocal style usually used in deathcore, exept these are a bit deeper and "wetter". He alternates this with high pitched shreiks which sound, "oddly", like every other band in this style. Fortunatly, the superior bark is used more than the scream, and the scream appears more for variety than for anything else.

I think it's safe to say that this could very well be a joke album and no one would ever know, it's masked so well. Making fun of the overly populated deathcore trend and the sometimes tedious and equally overly populated technical death metal trend as well as making fun of Meshuggah seems fairly entertaining, or at least entertaining enough to keep back the tears for several minutes. After a little intro track, "Wounds", the band jumps into a drum-fill and some lovely melodic riffage while the singer alternates predictably between death growls and higher ranged screams. It takes the band a total of 0:59 to get to the album's first breakdown, which is no less trendy and boring like most other breakdowns. The band then cycles around between some melodic riffage and another breakdown before they finally settle on another melodic riff, this time around far more technical and actually memorable. Actually, I dare say that this riff is pretty cool. While the singer's moderatly annoying shouts and screams don't really help matters, they manage to hold things up until the band adds in another breakdown. This is one of those breakdowns where they add a cheesy little build up, as if to say that this breakdown is a "big fucking deal". Oh, and guess what happens next? Perhaps, a cheesy polyrhythm breakdown? Yes. Then, there's ANOTHER breakdown, which is similarly boring and fucking stupid.

Unfortunatly, pretty much every song goes like this. The band is either playing "technical" melodic riffs and blasting along, playing "poly-downs", or just playing standard breakdowns and chugging to their little heart's contempt. Often, the first breakdown comes around a minute in, and the band basically just recycles these same few ideas in every single song. While the riffs are usually distinguishable, they are all in the same vein and there is absolutly no variety here. The band only gets their shit together in one of the album's tracks, "It's Not Safe to Swim Today", which is one of the few deathcore songs that is actually musical and not just a trendy little chug track. So yes, this song is awesome. The album's closer, "It's Torn Away", is okay, but the breakdowns become tedious after awhile and the length of the track (5:01) doesn't help things at all when there is a total of three ideas utilized period.

As far as I'm concerned, Veil of Maya have lots of potential but they are too concerned with pleasing scene kids and smoking weed to really use it. This is sad, but in the end there is no need to fuss because, honestly, what did you expect? This is a very bad album, and I don't really think this is a necessary listen at all.