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Good musicianship, forgetful music - 70%

Lustmord56, July 21st, 2009

Review Originally published at http://www.teethofthedivine.com by Erik Thomas

Arguably surpassing The Black Dahlia Murder as Metal Blade’s media darlings, JFAC have at least weathered the hype and the hate to change styles from their reee filled deathcore to morph into a more respectable death metal outfit, and retain their fan base as 2007s unit moving Genesis proved. However, in these eyes (or ears) JFAC , despite their best effort are still a rather forgetful death metal outfit when it’s all said and done.

There is nothing wrong with Ruination at all, except it’s completely indistinguishable from Genesis. Its full of nods to real death metal like Vader, Cannibal Corpse, Suffocation and such, its chock full of excellent musicianship, blasting complexity, heaving death metal prose, dual vocals and rigid Jason Seucoff (Trivium, All That Remains, etc) production, but for the life of me, I can’t recall a single moment from the album when its stopped spinning.

Slower moments like “March to Global Enslavement”, “Lords of Chaos” and impressive closing title track have a bit more staying power than pure blasters like opener “Unfurling a Darkened Gospel”, “Summon the Hounds”, “Constitutional Masturbation”, “Psychological Immorality” and “To Detonate and Exterminate” which is a majority of the album and are barely distinguishable from each other. It’s like they are still trying a little too hard, even the song titles seem a little forced. It’s like the band is so tightly wound and determined to shed their deathcore past that they unleash everything they have, like a kid having sex for the first few times. Instead, I wish JFAC would just relax, play and have fun (kinda like The Black Dahlia Murder did on Nocturnal - they were just as forced on Miasma), as they have ample chops and skill.

Still, Ruination is not a bad album and it is certainly a solid death record and I imagine it will move some units and be one of Metal Blade’s bigger 2009 which is a shame as releases by Lay Down Rotten and As You Drown are far better records, just without the hype of fanbase.