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bad bad bad - 15%

caspian, February 9th, 2021

Damn this is awful. It's maybe a bit encouraging; if these guys can get signed, so can anyone, right?

As MA mentions, these guys do death metal tunes, and they also do folky kinda tunes with death metal vocals. The latter doesn't need much description; fairly average neofolk (I was going to say "folky neofolk" which sounds kinda dumb, but it's true: there's no industrial or whatnot added) that has a bit of C93 and maybe some Sol Invictus?, but with pretty bad death growls. If that sounds fucken awful, that's because it is! Insult is added to injury in that the lyrics are pretty average and you have the misfortune of being able to understand them pretty well.

The death metal parts are also bad. It's hard to describe what makes the riffs so bad, but I reckon the best way to put it is that it's just kinda shit rock riffs but a bit downtuned and a bit more distorted. Get someone who's heard Enter Sandman or like, one My Dying Bride song and literally nothing else, and get them to write the heaviest album they can, and it's kinda like this. The riffs are simple but not in a badass Hellhammer-ish way. They're riffs we've all made back when we were 14 and then discarded them once we got better at playing, yknow? The vocals are average, the rhythm section tries their best, but an album with no riffs is like a house built on shifting sands. The blast sections, and there's not many, are by far the best; they're still not good, but the break from intensely bad mid paced riffs is a relief. Even if said riffs are just replaced by bad fast ones.

There are occasional attempts at atmosphere; vaguely creepy vocals in Shine Unseen, bits of ambience here and there. Shows these guys have tried, but inconsequential to the general badness of the whole thing.

I wouldn't say I hate this; hate's a strong word and I guess spending time loathing a random austrian band that I will never have to come across in my life again (fingers crossed) seems a bit silly. I would definitely say I don't like this at all, and have no plans on going anywhere near this band again.

Burn Brightly Alone - 84%

ravagingthemassacred, August 31st, 2012

Cadaverous Condition are an overlooked, long-running four piece Austrian band known for their integrity and experimental willingness. Wolfgang Weiss growls vocals, Peter Droneberger handles the bass, René Kramer delivers the guitars, and Paul Droneberger plays drums. Their brand of music is a distinctive, confidently basic incarnation of death metal with a lyrical focus.

Their 2011 release Burn Brightly Alone seems to have attracted a number of new fans for it's use of acoustic folk-guitar strumming coupled with death growls. This sound is not new to Cadaverous Condition, but it is more plentiful here than albums past. Burn Brightly Alone sees a blend of their recognizable death metal, folk, and some rock. There are also doom influences throughout, a depressive black metal passage, piano, spoken samples, and creeping ambiences to be found. But for it's curious description, Burn Brightly Alone is a completely natural sounding experience. Clearly they are not pandering to the “let's-see-the-rarest-combination-of-sounds-we-can-make” trend. Burn Brightly Alone is a genuine exploration of introspective regret, hatred, and bittersweet memory through an eclectic meshing of sounds. Within is woven an understanding of the ebb and flow of someone's inner thoughts. The vocals are perfect for the music – feeling, yet never sentimental; convincing; vicious at times. They are understood clearly and it adds to the emotional power behind the songs. A monotone style echoes neofolk influences seen in the vocal delivery of bands such as Of The Wand And The Moon. Lyrics are poetic and simple, and to study them brings out deeper layers and meanings.

Mid-paced, sometimes chuggy rockish riffs abound, delivered by a thick toned guitar. The first half of the album holds the most catchy and rock-influenced songs, such as “Alone I Will Travel In Time Tonight”. Unexpectedly, a couple blessed times I was brought to mind a sense of melody similar to Insomnium's. The bass is complementary and often audible. The beginning of “Wicklow Nightfall” harbors an especially memorable bass line. The drums serve their purpose and fit the music well, minus the couple times they feel a bit too prominent. The production is good and organic feeling. No filler is present.

A small complaint I have is that on “Shine Unseen, Then Disappear” there are two singers, a female and male, that echo Weiss disharmoniously. The result feels out of place and diminishes the song's atmosphere. Especially since a theme of the album is solitariness, I feel keeping one lonely set of vocals would be a beautiful furtherance. However, by no means is this a substantial fault. Of all songs, "The Clearing" is slightly unfocused, but again, it's not unenjoyable.

As for who is most likely to be taken in by these sounds, I believe it will appeal to a wide range of tastes. Anyone who appreciates a sense of melancholy and restrained rage, and those with a non-traditional taste should be able to find something to appreciate. I believe as a general group, people of a neofolk background are more likely to enjoy this than those of a primarily death metal background. And of course, anyone who is drawn to authentic music no matter the genre should give Burn Brightly Alone a listen.

In my humble opinion, the best songs of Burn Brightly Alone are We Both Go Down Together (Decemberists cover), Wicklow Nightfall, Use Your Blood, The Small Roads Out Of Town, and Into My River.