Register Forgot login?

© 2002-2021
Encyclopaedia Metallum

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

Privacy Policy

Your average Russian death metal band - 63%

gasmask_colostomy, December 4th, 2014

I got a bit fooled by this album the first time I listened to it, because I tend to read along with the lyrics and the vocalist has really bad English pronunciation, there's a lot of grammar mistakes, and some of it is generally incoherent. But then again, you know, it's a Russian death metal band we're talking about, so mistakes are allowable and the lyrics aren't that important. After the first few lines of 'Virgin Snow', he has an impressive raspy growl too. In general, the album is alright: medium-paced death metal with a few thrash parts thrown in.

The overall sound on Oppressive is good for this kind of release. Everything is very clear and is balanced. The only thing I would complain about is that one of the snares is thunky and dominates the mix at times. The guitars aren't very brutal, which is why the band sound more thrashy than deathly at times, even though they are playing fairly standard death metal with lots of palm-muting and fast kicks. They generally don't play technically, but there are a few interesting parts inserted such as the weird breakdown near the end of the last song, when everyone gets to have a little play about. The bass is usually audible but stays simple and heavy, which is a shame because the riffs aren't exactly challenging either. However, there is a good bass part about halfway through 'Lust of the Devil's Night'. The drumming is good - very busy and varied - except for the aforementioned dodgy snare.

Considering that the songs are fairly lengthy and don't tend to have many repeating sections, it means that each part is judged on its own merits, rather than strengthening itself through repetition. As such, all of the songs have some parts that drop off in quality due to a boring riff, although nothing hangs around long enough to grow really tedious. 'Virgin Snow' is a strong opener, building from a picturesque introduction into a hail of riffs and shrieks that is menacing in its grooves rather than sadistic in its pace. The pattern of most of the songs continues in this vein, with the last 2 main tracks ('My Throat' is an instrumental) providing the most heated attacks. All of the main songs benefit from carefully crafted solos that in fact use a guitar tone one might more commonly associate with John Petrucci or his ilk than a death metal band. They flow well within the compositions and are melodically strong.

There's nothing really great going on for Miscreant, but Oppressive is a decent effort at the less brutal end of the death metal spectrum. The best songs are probably 'Virgin Snow' and 'Last Day of the Condemned to Death' - which is apparently inspired by Victor Hugo - but whatever you do, don't try to read the lyrics.