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Fight for the Truth and the Frreedom, GLORIA! - 88%

21stcenturydigitalboy, November 17th, 2008

Inhuman Rampage could almost be described as a really high-pitched black metal album. Constant blast-beats and insane shredding create an immenseness of noise that supersedes any other band their genre over. Dragonforce have received one criticism time and time again: all of their songs sound alike. Do I disagree? no. Do I care? fuck no. I've heard each of the Dragonforce albums well over 100 times and can hum to solos and pick out all the things that make song A different from song B. When it comes right down to it, using the same formula doesn't really matter if you're not hitting the same notes. As biting youtube videos have shown, playing all the Dragonforce songs at the same time does not mean you will hear one song, so if you get past the formulaic thing (as I mostly have) then there's potentially a lot to like.

My biggest gripe on the album is actually a little different (though points were taken off on the repetitiveness regardless) and that is that the album is very difficult to listen to all at once. Unless you are in a situation where you really require insanely high-tempo power metal, this album won't likely stay in rotation as all that background noise is a fast road to a headache. Most of the times that this album has been positive for me are when I was cleaning my house and the music made it automatically fun. It's not really a huge problem for a band to have set situations for listening, though, and the music is always fine in concentrated bursts.

What matters most about Inhuman Rampage is that it is a motherfucking powerhouse. Most of the reason I can not get into traditional power metal bands is because none match up to Dragonforce's sheer.... well, power. The album is constantly moving at 900 miles-per-hour with a nonstop fucking blastbeat and the fastest guitar wankery on the face of the earth. It's pretty easy to accuse the half-song length solos of being derivative and unimaginative because they have a lot of what sounds like 'fuck it hit every note on the fretboard' however truly everything that Dragonforce does, they do in the name of fun. It's like when a bunch of dudes sit around and say 'wouldn't it be fucking awesome if there were just three minutes of fucking insane off-the-wall guitar mastery to headbang to?' and it happened, and it worked. The people who find reasons to hate Dragonforce simply aren't the intended audience. There are metal-heads like myself who just every once in a while want to go absolutely fucking insane to the most head-bangable music in the universe, and Inhuman Rampage fills that niche.

In comparison to the other Dragonforce albums, I'd put Inhuman Rampage on par at the top with Valley of the Damned. The later certainly has more variety in it's songs and better writing, but Inhuman Rampage has the sheer skill, power, and wankery to tie it up for me. Rather than writing fundamentally original songs or throwing in refreshing segments of originality (as done on Valley), Dragonforce opted to take any unique and cool idea they had and toss them in at random times during the solos which, once again, just fucking works if you're the right listener. Personally, I get psyched when I'm in the middle of the most intense solo of all time and suddenly out rips an immense bass breakdown followed by the fucking song from Mario or something. It's quite glorious. The bass and keyboard mostly got turned way the fuck down on this album but both have their moments, and oh are those moments a blast.

Z. P. Theart's vocals are worth mentioning on their own as well. This man has the most uplifting and powerful voice this side of Dio. You bet your ass it sounds a bit cheesy, but every line is delivered with such gusto that it's hard not to love. This adds the 'oomf' to the choruses that make them almost all unforgettable and infinitely singable. The album's lyrics are, admittedly, pretty hilariously unoriginal. I actually counted and the number of times the words 'fire' or 'flames' were used came out to 45. Forty fucking five. And most of the other lyrics are constantly reused as well. This, however, does not make them any less awesome.

Really, one's like or dislike of Dragonforce is based pretty much entirely on themselves, as there is next to no way to objectively view this band (not that I believe in objectivity anyways.) There are a lot of diehard fans and a lot of haters, and neither is about to convince the other that they are wrong. I wouldn't really say Dragonforce is one of my alltime favorites, but I find them hard not to love.