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A Short Nugget of Death/Thrash - 55%

deadweight2, January 2nd, 2009

What Have We Become? is a short, 5-song EP from Cerberus. The best way to know what to expect here is to imagine Lamb of God without the metalcore influences: i.e., extreme brutal death/thrash with only a modicum of melody. You know, like they recruited two rhythm guitarists and forgot to hire a lead guitarist.

The overall sound is very similar to that of Dispute The Truth; see my review of that album for an overview. Basically, lots of death/thrash, not a lot of melody, crunchy guitars, an intense, brutal atmosphere, an unrelenting pace, powerful death metal vocals, and solid but uninspired guitars.

To get a you sense of how the album starts, "Falling Empire" is a crunchy, rhythmic-focused song. "Obsidian" is more of the same, with some blast-beat drumming (which I find too rhythmically boring/unvaried for my tastes), and tasty guitar riffs. The title track, "What Have We Become?", follows the same pattern, but with some longer instrumental segments. Everything here has a very steady beat that gets your blood flowing. The rest of the songs continue likewise. The good news is that this is a thoroughly consistent release. The bad news is that it's a thoroughly consistent release, with little variation.

Be warned that there is some overlap between this and Cerberus's later "Dispute The Truth" release: the songs "The Answer" and "In Contempt" are found on both.

Overall, "What Have We Become?" feels like it is competent at achieving what it is aiming for but uninspired and derivative. The feel is very similar to Dispute The Truth; if you are new to Cerberus, I'd get Dispute The Truth before What Have We Become?. Recommended only for completists or fans of this genre who just can't get enough of it.

Be warned that my relatively low score is probably influenced by the fact that I am not a huge fan of the Lamb of God genre. Fans of that stuff might rate this more highly.