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Selling Sex, Selling Lies - 65%

Colonel_Kurtz, August 18th, 2004

Never before has a band well knowingly released an album that sounded as if they were in a coma. What I mean is, they are lying to themselves and their fans. Earlier releases exhibted more variation and higher musicianship. Here, they just fiddle around with the same binary structure for 13 tracks.

The opening track really sets the tone for this basic binary form. Sure the song is catchy and has a little crunch, but when you find out that 12 other songs resemble it, you sort of wonder what got you into this? Was it the female vocalists constantly prancing around? The funniest thing happened, I thought this was a 6-piece, not an one-woman band. Guess images deceive.

So back to the first track "Swamp". It has some nice guitar work and some alright vocals. Overall, it is an average track. However, the thing that bothers me is the mic volume for Cristina's voice. I have always been a critic of her voicing saying it has no power or identity. Well, this all but justfies it. This is my main problem with the band. When you are going for this clean vocal female thing I really expect a Soprano or Alto voice. Well, I got neither. Instead we have this chick pushing, breathing, and even moaning out the lyrics. Sorry, but if you need to force yourself to sound good, you really do not sound good. I said the same in my In Flames review for Reroute to Remain, if you need to force yourself to play jazz, then you cannot play jazz. Well Cristina is doing just that. Forcing herself to sound good, when in reality, she does not. You got away with it for 2 full-length albums, the gig is up! Practice, get some talent, or get out!

Of course the voice is not the only problem, it is the strong structure. Female opening-male verse-female chrous and repeat all. Not very fun. It is rather predictable. Yes Lacuna Coil wants to avoid the whole Beauty and the Beast vocal scheme of other bands, but when you look at it, that Beauty and the Beast theme works quite well. Why? You got a Soprano voice dueling with death growls. Here you just got a Metallica-whine with a female-moan. Yes I am on the voice again, but this has a lot to do with the structure as well. Everything sounds alike. No change of pace, no vocal variation. Just a flatline of melodic tunes.

The drumming and guitar playing make me wonder if this is the same band that released In a Reveire. It is. This is the band lying to themselves. You have the musicianship, use it!!! Instead we have basic highschool playing. Cmon guys, you are signed on a label, selling albums around the world, at least show some artistic creditbility. On top of that, the bass sounds nonexistant. Actually sounds like the bass is being done through guitars playing from a bass amp.

The only thing that comes out strong is the keyboards which ironically goes unstated in the linear votes. Just cut the bassist and make him a full time keyboardist.

The last thing that bothers me is how this is classified as Goth Metal. That is a great big communist lie! Just because you have a female vocalists does not make you goth! So stop calling them that. They were maybe 5-6 years ago, not any longer. To me this is modern hard rock with a dark edge, but hardly gothic. Calling this album gothic is like calling NIN industrial, you only kill the genre by telling the masses it is something that it is really not.

Funny how the album has the word "lies" in it, cause that is all this band is selling!