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More like cellaBORE. lol! - 20%

caspian, August 13th, 2017

Lot of people frothing on this, but count me out. I just can't handle the vocals. It seems pretty shallow to write off a band just because I find the vocals so annoying, but here I am doing just that! I guess when they're such a major part of a band like they are here, they can really kill or make a band. Here they do the former.

Perhaps a quick PSA here is due in that I basically rant about the vocals for a big ol' chunk of this review.

Everything else is OK. Not horrible, not too great, coming across as if a europower band decided to actually write some riffs. Very, very very polished, and while there's a bit of galloping here and there and the occasional thrash influence at no point could you realistically say this is "heavy". It's just too cleanly produced; everything slips past, spit-shined and never grabbing you by the throat. I'm pretty confident Blink 182 had a meatier guitar tone than this album. They certainly had better vocals. Half assed trolling aside, look, the band can clearly play- there's a lot of really triumphant noodles, and I reckon learning this album on guitar would be a real pain in the ass- but it never comes across as deliberately wanky which points to some tight songwriting and a band that knows exactly when to go nuts and exactly when to reign it in so the vocals can take over..

So the vocals can take over. Oh dear.

Yeah, the vocals. Well, there's no way to put it kindly, it sounds like an metalcore singer from the late 2000s got lost and ended up fronting the wrong band. Loads (fucken' loads) of auto tune, and that annoying high-ish register that every metalcore clean has ever been in. I'm fairly confident that the guy used a total of 5 different notes on this album. Not a whole lot of force, and yeah, the dude honestly sounds like he is singing for the wrong band. It's a shame, as listening back to the title track reveals that it's a perfectly OK song- decent amount of energy, plenty of catchy guitar lines- and would probably be really good if you had someone not singing some inane platitudes, in a rubbish, "melodic chorus from My Weeping Heart of Silence*" kinda tone, with enough auto tune to feed a large african country. There's definitely a few songs where you wonder that if you had someone singing in a style closer to Pharoah or Argus or something- in other words, singing their balls off, in a more traditional power metal style- that things could be very different for Cellador.

"The vocals are only part of the album!" You may say. Well sure, but they're a big part of the album. There's a reason why most people don't talk about how a song gets ruined by a badly tuned floor tom, or by the bass. It's like saying "the lead actor is not the only part of the movie" or "the off milk in your breakfast cereal shouldn't ruin your corn flakes". They're a huge part- mixed loudly, and most songs are vocal driven- and thus there's no way I could recommend this album.


*not an actual band or song (as far as I know)