Review Summary: Carnifex try hard but miss the mark completely.
Originality in music is something that is needed, a band that pushes themselves farther and makes albums that bring something new to the collective table. Lately, it seems, originality has been harder and harder to find in music, especially the metal genre. Anyone who listens to this genre of music will ultimately know about the deathcore genre. Combining elements of traditional death metal and hardcore to basically get blastbeats with breakdowns and two step. There are a few bands that I feel do deathcore right, and there is even more bands that are just copycats of every other band in the genre and rip each other off constantly. This makes for quite the boring listening experience as you can probably already tell, basically you hear one good deathcore album, you've heard about all the genre has to offer. Carnifex released Dead In Your Arms
in 2007 on This City is Burning Records
with little to no fan fare, which was actually recieved quite well in the music community at the time (probably due to the fact that there wasn't a million other bands doing the same thing back then). But since then have gotten signed to the much reviled label Victory Records
and released their first major release The Diseased and Poisoned
Now as I stated above, orginality in music is key, this album has absolutely none of it. There is not one song on this album that will stick on your head for any reason whatsoever. It is quite possibly the most bland listening experience you'll ever have, if you chose to listen to it. Blastbeats, countless upon countless breakdowns, groove sections, low growls, pig squeals and pinch harmonics are what make up this bland collection of songs. The guitars are about par for the genre and are just kind of there, just doing their thing, with the typical metalcore/deathcore riffs. The two guitar players play off of each other nicely but there just isn't enough on the cd to suggest that they are anything spectacular. The drums are mediocre the typical blast beats, two step, and slow lumbering breakdown beats make up this drummers resume and there isn't really any song where the drumming goes outside of those three elements.
The vocals are probably the best thing going for the album, and they're still not that good. The vocalist mixes up his vocals constantly with lows, mids and highs and the occasional pig squeal here and there, but just like the drummer, doesn't really stray to far away from those elements the entire course of the album. The bass, you guessed it, you cant hear one bit of it throughout the entire album. So there isn't really anything to say about it other than its there...somewhere. The lyrics are ok, but nothing to make you want to sing along with what he's doing, the typical lyrics about the girl he hates, about how much humanity sucks and other ramblings.
At this point this sounds like much less than a two, it's not that the album doesn't deserve any lower (cause it probably does) but its just that the music itself isn't bad, each of these guys are talented. Or else they wouldn't have gotten anywhere with it, its just that in this ever expanding genre, if you want to keep doing good, you need to expand. The music is good by traditional standards, (especially compared to some other 2008 releases) but it just doesn't do anything new whatsoever. It feels like the same song 12 times in a row with different tempo's and even more breakdowns. If Carnifex want to keep its fans and start to make new ones they're going to have to take a chance or two in the future.
The Diseased and Poisoned
is about as bland as musically possible, there isn't anything on this album that will make you remember it, plain and simple. The overused breakdowns and generic guitars will make you want to stop this album 2 songs in and the mediocrity of everything else on the album will probably not ensure a future listening experience with this band or expel your faith in the deathcore genre forever (if anything else hasn't already). This album is a chore to listen to in fact, but at the same time, I have heard a lot worse in a genre that almost conjures bad bands every single day, all over the world, and there is a lot worse out there than this. Lets just hope that bands like this can start thinking originally and make some actually good music in the future, and if not? Not the end of the world.