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Wading Through the Aggro, Doomy 90’s Darkness - 62%

bayern, November 26th, 2017

… or rather groping, in this particular case. This act were the continuation of the retro thrashers Pixie Killers (earlier Atro City) who threw their explosive debut in 1993 before changing the course towards the coming groovy/post-thrashy/aggro fashions under the moniker here. It shouldn’t have come as a big surprise as most of the retro metal practitioners tried to adapt to those new sounds more or less successfully, and this new formation did a fairly decent job by proclaiming the noisy, groovy idea far’n wide for a while.

“Primates” was a heavy doom-laden debut the guys equally adept at exasperating the environment in a way akin to Pantera, and at sinking all the ships in the nearby port with seismic reverberations in the spirit of Soulstorm. The album reviewed here increases the dynamics, though, and the latter ability isn’t that prominently displayed as the riffs have a more energetic flair added to them, but are at the same time devoid of the more aggressive thrashy veneer the opening “Manipulated” creating quite a bit of artificial noise with the jumpy rhythms and the vociferous production which will remind of the one from the Biohazard works. “Soul Peaces” calms the ball down with sombre doomy vibes, but “Without Pain” “painlessly” brings back the hectic, nervy jumps and jolts which grow into the short hardcore outburst “The Day Will Come”.

Obviously this opus won’t be standing still, but will be constantly moving from one approach to another, and these brief explosions keep coming although the album has its more attractive, more pensive side in the form of the 7.5-min “Cold Hand”, an interesting semi-balladic pounder with serene balladic “intrusions” and a generally fairly serious layout which continues on “The Choice You Make”, a psychedelic spacey sleeper that pacifies the environment to such an extent that when the short explosive “Bloodred” comes moshing, the listener may literally get startled although “Damned” and the rest of the material will provide no more rude awakenings of the kind, the delivery settling for bouncy, not very eventful groovisms with a hefty stoner/doomy flavour save for the soothing lyrical closer “Midnight”.

A contrasting recording has been cooked here lacking the monolithic, more officiant aura of the debut, the band trying to please a wider range of fans although it’s not quite certain how the latter had accepted this uneven amalgam which switches from academic doomisms to spastic hardcore-ish jolts in no time, not always to the listener’s pleasant surprise, the band never settling for a particular style, creating a lot of noisy drama in the process which some fans may plainly dismiss as an overdone pile of 90’s musical modernisms with which the field had started filling in the mid-90’s, with the majority of the numetal styles having reached their zenith.

The creative cul-de-sac all those were heading towards caught up with our friends here as well, but at least they managed to get out of it with some style which in their case was the good new stoner/doom. Yes, acts like Cathedral, Spiritual Beggars and Kyuss had already traversed this territory, and the Danes were quite willing to try those heavy spacey sounds, signs of which were already featured prominently on the album here. Three more efforts followed the guys sounding convincing enough to prolong their career through the new millennium and out of the 90’s “darkness”. No more groping, no more grooving… no more doomy stones thrown into the old school’s back yard.