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Now Add Nauseam - 70%

GuntherTheUndying, January 24th, 2012

So, the apparent quest for gore and guts ultimately led to the members of Gorerotted putting the project to rest and forming a completely different one—known as The Rotted—which instead incorporates an array of influences ranging from the primary focus of death metal to d-beat, punk, and maybe some standardized heavy metal. "Ad Nauseam," the group's second album, continues the same assault birthed during The Rotted's original set of releases, not really expanding on the band's post-Gorerotted identity, although that isn't necessarily a bad thing. It's a harsh and entertaining listen, sure, and I'm certainly left feeling like I wasn't robbed of my time; necks were broken, faces thrashed, and furniture ruined. Check, check, and check. Not quite the most original piece of death metal ever forged, but still a fun, consistent listen.

My experience with Gorerotted is limited, yet the band's transformation since forming The Rotted remains intact following their debut and that little EP that emerged shortly thereafter. The album relies more on catchy hooks and simple songwriting compared to the slew of madness which spawned from Gorerotted; it's much more dependent on choruses and rock-inspired licks than anything else. The Rotted really has no problem composing some trashy fun in the process though, and the guitar work generally hits a spot between melody and brawn which just tastes savory and digestible. There are some sections of pure tremolo riffs and several other characteristics of The Rotted's former self making cameo bits here and there, but overall they sound like a death metal band penning anthems in tribute to Motörhead or Discharge.

I do have one complaint: "Ad Nauseam" never becomes anything more than the tentative simplicity it flexes although there are glimmers of a superior band trying to emerge. It's more or less just catchy death metal that isn't overflowing with awesome riffs or sickening vocals, and I'm still left feeling a little hungry despite the consistency The Rotted shoves into most of their tunes, if that makes sense; there could be more, that's what I'm trying to say. The only authentic anomaly on the musical end is "Put Me Out of Your Misery" which bumps on in a slow-roasting instrumental crunch, probably one of the record's finest songs because it at least changes the pace of the album.

I've already voiced my single-digit concerns over "Ad Nauseam," and it's really just the lack of truly fantastic material that holds down The Rotted here, at least from the perspective of allowing the album to become something magnificent. It's certainly fun stuff, and achieving that little goal was no doubt the group's biggest objective; safe to say they pulled it off with precision and accurate flow. There's no reason to skip over this if you thoroughly enjoy The Rotted's debut album, yet be weary if you’re expecting something that's stunningly technical or gushing the trademark traits of death metal. I'm still quite satisfied overall, and I'm sure The Rotted will attract metalheads just looking an aggressive fix.

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