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Experimental at any cost - 45%

kluseba, January 9th, 2017
Written based on this version: 1995, CD, Motor Music

Voodoocult's second and self-titled effort sounds much more energizing and diversified than the mechanic and monotonous predecessor ''Jesus Killing Machine'' one year earlier. This release focuses less on a dystopian atmosphere and offers more diversified soundscapes ranging from alternative rock tunes with punk vibes and audio samples over fresh groove metal tracks to traditional up-tempo thrash metal tracks. This album could also be partially categorized as what would later be known as nu metal because of the use of some samples, aggressive riffs and spoken word vocals. While this album offers much more to discover than the predecessor, it also needs much more time to open up and is often hard to digest because it's all over the place stylistically. An actual hit like ''Metallized Kids'' on the predecessor is also missing on this weird output.

Philip Boa whispers, speaks and screams on this album and clearly tries to be more experimental than before. While these experiments add some much-needed diversity, they also prove that his vocals are too limited to front a metal band. ''Electrified Scum'' is clearly the band's most brutal track and offers a ferocious thrash metal tune that reminds of the founding years and fathers of the genre. Sadly, the vocals drag this great tune down since they are constantly out of tone, out of rhythm and out of breath. Sometimes, Philip Boa's direct, mean and raw vocals are almost unbearable on this output.

Being more experimental doesn't mean that this album is actually an improvement over the first release. Single ''When You Live as a Boy'' offers hip hop samples, low riffs and spoken-word vocals which might almost be considered visionary since this type of music would later been known as nu metal and conquer the world shortly after. On the other side, this song is quite horrible in my opinion because the guitar work is even less inspired than anything on the predecessor and the beats are very repetitive. Some rhythmic bass lines and the more diversified vocals make this track a below average tune instead of a miserable failure. ''Exorcized by a Kiss'' is even worse and can be described as distorted guitar noise with spoken word vocals in the verses and a weak copy of a Megadeth riffs with an uninspired vocal performance and lazy lyrics in the chorus. These songs try too hard to be artsy at any cost and turn out being quite annoying.

To keep it short, ''Voodoocult'' sounds much more diversified than the predecessor ''Jesus Killing Machine'' and features a line-up that looks more like an actual band than an all-star project. Sadly, this release is often all over the place stylistically and is missing a clear guiding line. This records clearly includes more misses than hits. Especially the unfocused, uneasy and uncompromising vocals drag several songs down. Voodoocult offers alternative metal without a brain, heart and soul. Some people claim that this release is an improvement over the first output but it just sounds plain weird to me. Experimental minds with a weakness for weird soundscapes might like this output but anyone else should ignore this record. Those who are looking for solid experimental rock and metal that sounds similar yet much better than this release, should go for the records of Red Hot Chili Peppers, Rage Against The Machine and Jane's Addiction of the early and mid-nineties.