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Sorry to piss on Dimebag Darrell's grave, but... - 45%

algolauslander, May 1st, 2007

...but I don't think this poor album's gotten a good review yet-- so why the fuck should I not continue the trend?

At least for the moment, I am still a numetal/ mallcore fan. As such, I believe that some numetal is good, and some is bad. For example:
Mushroomhead-- good; Slipknot-- bad.
Demon Hunter-- good; Devildriver-- bad.
Static-X-- good; Korn-- bad.

Damageplan is on the bad list.

Up until listening to this album, I honestly thought that numetal was such a diverse genre with such a huge multitude of influences, that no two bands could ever sound alike. Damageplan actually comes very close to sounding like some other groups, such as No One (the mallcore band of that name, not the band on this site, if there still is one). Damageplan is the final result, the apex of people playing numetal for as long as they have. It's time that those people just give the fuck up so I don't feel like a fucking dinosaur when I open my CD case.

But... I believe very strongly in being fair, so I will give this album a fair review just like the other albums I've reviewed.

Possibly the best part of New Found Power would probably be the guitars. Or maybe it was the drums, so I'll put them in the same paragraph. The guitars, as per any "good" groove "metal" (Damageplan, to me, is hard rock with screams and double bass), there are some decent groove riffs. If I were an idiot, I would say they were "thrashy," but only in an incredibly vague sense. However, the two or three good riffs throughout the album often do exact a price on the listener's ears, for they are so fucking downtuned that sometimes the tone seems inaudible. Maybe that's just me and my hearing problems, but I think I now see why people complain about downtuning in numetal.

Did I say drums would be in the same paragraph? I guess I lied. The drums are the only other remotely shining points on this record, simply because throughout the CD there are a couple really cool midtempo sections which are accented by the aforementioned mildly amusing pseudo-thrash groove riffs. These sections seem to be very popular in groove and numetal, but they are also found in real metal as well. The drums, too, though, are a double edged sword-- for they are nothing spectacular. Granted, I have heard simpler, less involved drum patterns from other artists (maybe from the 70's or 80's!) but as I delve further into extreme metal, I'm starting to get really bored with anything that isn't spectacular. So except for a scant couple good tracks, nothing special here.

Vocals leave something to be desired as well. They're very numetal sounding, not surprisingly. I may like numetal, but I think the only really good numetal vocalists are in Mushroomhead and Demon Hunter. Whoever this guy is, I'm never good with names, is not necessarily bad, but he's nothing I haven't heard before. Also, there is a near total absence of clean sung vocals, which I've always thought of as a requirement for being "metalcore." I could always be wrong. Also, the lyrics are pretty stereoypical for numetal, especially the track "Fuck You," or whatever it's called. I've heard the themes presented on this album so many times that it's aggravating.

Finally, the bass. My ears are not very well attuned to hearing bass most of the time, but what I do hear is the stereoypical "mallcore bass." Even as I am a mallcore fan, I do not enjoy mallcore bass. I prefer the bass guitar sound that is found in death and black metal.

Also, on a completely different note, there were some electronics on one song in an intro, and I thought that was totally pretentious given the nature of the rest of the album.

The final verdict: this pretty much sucks, even by numetal standards. This is not more "metal" than "core," in fact, it's neither. It just another example of a numetal band that thinks it's metalcore because they have screaming and maybe some breakdowns. In my opinion, this is not even worthy of being on this site; it's only here because it counts as a non-metal side project of Dimebag Darrell, and if it was just an Average Joe band, it would have been turned away quicker than that guy who said that Devildriver is "death/ black metal" (which is total fucking bullshit!). Now, because I like this kind of stuff, it's fairly all right with me, but I'm trying to warn the rest of you: IF YOU DO NOT ABSOLUTELY ADORE NUMETAL/ MALLCORE, DO NOT BUY THIS ALBUM-- YOU WILL FUCKING HATE IT!!!