Review Summary: Whitechapel release 'The Somatic Defilement' but fail to make songs that capture the listener or are in any way memorable.
Metalcore, deathcore, grindcore...The use of the word 'core' has been thrown around so much in the past 3 or 4 years when describing metal. People tend to write off bands before they have even heard them just due to the 'label' that people have lumped them in with. Now I am a middle man, I like metalcore. I think there are still some bands that give metalcore a good name and continue to put out good releases with good music. There are a few that I think need to hang up the instruments and try something new. Now 'deathcore' is a very touchy genre. The majority of people who like death metal are VERY protective about what exactly qualifies as traditional death metal. The very mentioning of metalcore mixed with death metal sends some people into fits. I love traditional death metal, and I am a fan of deathcore and grindcore. Again in the same vein as metalcore, I feel there are some bands giving the genre a good name and vice versa. Whitechapel is another band that has been discovered through the internet community of myspace. But does this band of death metal inspired, young hooligans stand up to the hype?
To start this review off lets get something out of the way. No matter what anyone says, this band is in no way progressive. They bring NOTHING new to the table, the traditional fast guitars and break beat breakdowns are all over this cd. Also the band is in many ways in their infancy, they don’t have a lot of major tours or anything like that under their belt, so they are still coming into their own, and ill respect that.
First off, "The Somatic Defilement" is a very slickly produced album. Everything on this cd is equally heard (yes that includes bass) and everything sounds amazing. To some that may be a turn off due to most death metal records get their 'intensity' from not being the most amazingly produced album in history. But this one still manages to sound intense, even with its slick production. The album as a whole is relatively the same the whole way through. Songs don’t vary too much from one to the other and some are very easy to forget. The one thing this band banks on is their vocalist. His gutturals are really good. He has other ranges that he hits but his lows are the highlight of the cd. His vocals shine on songs like "The Somatic Defilement" "Prostatic Fluid Asphyxiation" and "Vicer Exciser". But just about everything else on the cd is what you would call 'generic'. There are no memorable guitar riffs or amazing drumming. Now I'm not saying that these guys aren't talented, but they just don’t make you go "Wow now that’s a crazy riff/drumming." Like I said above these guys are not progressive in any way shape or form. But these guys are intense; they definitely don’t short on that at all.
There are only a few tracks worth mentioning on this cd. The First is the title track "The Somatic Defilement" after a brief intro this song launches into a faced paced drum solo that kicks in with a huge guttural low and grindcore-y riff. The song has some cool lyrics but nothing really worth mentioning. The other song worth mentioning is "Vicer Exciser" this song features some of the only respectable riffing on the entire disc. Coupled with some awesome lyrics in the breakdown, "And I will spit right you f***ing face. How does it taste? After the lips are sealed below your waist. You will never f*** again!" Right before launching into a well placed off timed breakdown. But other than that, this cd fails to capture any memorable moments or anything worth mentioning.
Altogether this cd delivers on the intensity scale and doesn’t let up through even one song. But it sacrifices ingenuity or any shred of memorability. This cd is just plain average. None of the songs are bad to say the least. But they just don’t hit as hard as they aim to. Again I give this band credit for being young and coming into their own. I would love to hear some music from down the road from these guys. And I hope they can find the formula they need to capture some more listeners and make some more memorable death metal/deathcore songs.
Not that exciting
Nothing that makes this cd standout
Songs sound very similar to other songs