Register Forgot login?

© 2002-2019
Encyclopaedia Metallum

Best viewed
without Internet Explorer,
in 1280 x 960 resolution
or higher.

Privacy Policy

The exact opposite of what they should be doing - 10%

DomDomMCMG, April 15th, 2013

Fallujah is one of the biggest rising names in modern technical death metal, with the very well received EP "Leper Colony" and debut album "The Harvest Wombs" already in their catalogue. However, I find myself often wondering why this band are so critically successful because their output is essentially a mix of bland technical mush on the debut and non-stop breakdowns with an occasional black metal riff on the EP.

So here is Fallujah with their second EP "Nomadic". I figured i'd listen to it because on "The Harvest Wombs" they exhibited quite a lot of potential on one song, "Cerebral Hybridization" to be exact. Finding this song tolerable and actually enjoyable in comparison to the rest of the album that just blurs together leaving no impression on the listener, I had hoped the band would capitalise on this potential and start writing more songs like that one. However, my hopes have not become reality.

Of course, it is not my place to dictate how a band writes their music, but I feel that Fallujah would become a band worth celebrating if they would just start to write more songs like "Cerebral Hybridization", as opposed to six minute songs that only have mere seconds of brilliance interspersed throughout.

The album begins with a slow, quiet ambient buildup that launches straight into a very chuggy and suspiciously djent-styled riff, which goes on for a while before going into some random noodling that seems only to serve as evidence that the band can play fast technical music, even if it doesn't sound very good. Sure enough the band find themselves going right back to randomly placing atmospheric parts into their songs where they do not fit with no build-up at all, easily my biggest problem with the debut full-length.

My other major issue with the full-length was the drummer, playing inhumanly fast blast beats at almost every point in the album, even at points where it is absolutely not necessary or recommended, usually during the quiet ambient sections. While here he manages to refrain from needlessly thundering on his kit at every opportunity, providing some admittedly impressive fills a couple of times, he soon goes right back to the "blast beats work with everything" formula, most notably in the last minute of "Venom Upon the Blade".

The vocal work is very much the same as before, a very hoarse and forced sounding growl that borders on a hardcore shout at times in "Venom Upon the Blade", which also features a completely unnecessary breakdown from a band who are trying to move away from deathcore. The basswork mostly follows the guitars, while still being somehow audible, which is admittedly an impressive feat.

Track 2 of the EP gets its own paragraph. While for the first 2 minutes you'd be forgiven for just thinking this is an extended quiet intro to another song, it's not. It's exactly 5 minutes of nothing. Just quiet. But hey it is called "Silent" so I guess you could say it's exactly what it says on the tin (or CD case if this wasn't a digital release). Having 5 minutes of silence where they could've had another song seems like a waste and a bit of a "FUCK YOU!" to the fans for actually having to pay for this track, although if the rest of the EP is anything to go by maybe it's a little merciful that they didn't put another song here.

Of course, no technical death metal band would be complete without solos! Even Defeated Sanity find a way to fit a couple into their tech/slam formula. The first solo, on the track Dead Sea, sounds completely uninspired and quite lazy. However, Venom Upon the Blade's solo is far more impressive, even if it isn't immediately memorable.

Basically, Fallujah have again focused too much on being too technical and putting in WAY too many atmospheric sections and it just comes off sounding uninspired and bland. There is still a fair bit of potential that needs to be properly explored, but they couldn't even manage to nail a whole song of excellence this time around. One solo and a couple decent drum fills isn't really enough to be considered "groundbreaking" or "fresh" in my opinion. If you're in the market for quality modern technical death metal you should go about picking up "Radiophobia" by Cytotoxin or "Passages Into Deformity" by Defeated Sanity instead.