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It's like eating tasty metal riffs. Out of my ass. - 52%

RapeTheDead, February 1st, 2011

White Wizzard are one of the most popular bands in this new explosion of retro-metal bands -one of the top tier bands in this new "rebirth", and fittingly enough they're a pretty good representative of the trad metal bands forming today, though that's not necessarily a compliment. This whole "rebirth" of trad metal that seems to be going on these days has relatively equal amounts of praise and hatred, and I'm not quite sure what side of the fence I'm on yet. On the one hand, most of these bands can crank out some damn fine rockin' ditties- on the other hand, so can all the classic metal bands from the 80's and they do it with a little more flair, class and testosterone and I'd much rather listen to that instead. These new bands do a pretty good job of replicating the classic sound, but they never go anywhere with it- never really expand on it and are perfectly content with sounding "old school" and never end up creating something truly great. They simply rock out, when really they should ROCK OUT WITH THEIR COCK OUT, y'know?

The songs on High Speed GTO sound incredibly plain. There's no intricacy, no subtlety, no depth- What you see is what you get. It wouldn't be as bad if the up-front, prominent features of the album were composed well enough to carry the song on their own, but they aren't. I'm certainly not one to judge the technical abilities of the guitarists, as I don't play the instrument myself- but it doesn't take a genius to see that these riffs and leads are painfully simple and rehashed. A lot of them sound more like they should be the part of the music that provides a backbone or harmony to the lead rather than actually BEING the lead. Even the occasional time they DO pull a somewhat intricate lead out of their ass, it's something you've heard tens of times before dozens of years ago. It's not like it sounds bad or anything, but where's the flavor? Where are the fresh, tasty guitar melodies that are supposed to suck me in, spit me out and keep me coming back for more? That's the whole goddamn reason I listen to traditional heavy metal in the first place, so cater to my needs you fucking morons! It's not just enough to SOUND the part; you have to actually embrace the characteristics of the genre that make it a worthwhile one to listen to!

So, if a metal record is musically superficial and simple, what must it rely on in order to have redeeming value? BALLS. Countless metal bands, even in the traditional metal realm, have made some really stagnant and boring music and made it sound like the best thing to ever happen to man since some ugly cave chick looked at an ugly erect caveman dick and thought to herself "I wonder what that tastes like". Unfortunately, much to my dismay, this album is severely lacking in the testosterone department as well. For one thing, for a self-released EP, High Speed GTO has been produced cleaner than a virgin's snatch- the guitars lack any bite that would make them considerably "ballsy", and the vocals are layered like a motherfucker- which only makes us more aware of the fact that these vocals are, well, pretty gay. James-Paul Luna's got a nice, easily digestible voice, and he's certainly giving it his all, but he lacks the rough edges and gnarly, abrasive tone that's almost mandatory for this style of music. He's pretty much the main hook of the band though, seeing as he sings some pretty damn catchy vocal lines- unfortunately, due to the (lack of) quality in his voice, I only end up listening to this album again because I feel like I HAVE to, not because I WANT to; these songs always end up getting stuck in my head and the only way to get them out is to play the EP again.

I've been giving this EP quite a bit of slander in this review, but truth is I really didn't mind it- but only because it's so damned inoffensive and basic and that could almost be counted as a flaw in and of itself. High Speed GTO is stupid simple trad metal for the stupid simple trad metal kids who are latching onto this "movement"; nothing much more to it. This is so light and fluffy it almost reminds me of pop-punk at times (particularly during that first verse of "Into the Night") which is pretty much a warning sign that I should stay the fuck away. When you get right down to it, White Wizzard is basically just a band who was in the right place at the right time that got WAY more famous than they should have, because their music isn't really any more deserving of your attention (maybe even less so) than any other 'eavy metal band out there, new or old. Give 'er a spin if you're still intrigued about the band, but chances are you'll listen to it a lot at first because of its sickening catchiness, then get really annoyed of it- and really, didn't we start listening to metal in the first place to get AWAY from albums that had that kind of effect on you?