"The most brutal record ever released on a major label"
Now even though he may have been using this statement because he produced the record, the exaggeration is pretty agreeable. Amen is a supergroup of sorts, with Sonny Mayo (guitar) and John Tumor (bass) from Snot, Shannon Larkin (drums) from Godsmack, and Casey Chaos as the songwriter/vocalist, out on a mission to audially blow up the white house. They try to apply the metal-based punk to their sound, but only retain it for the first two albums, this being the second. They released their self-titled debut on Roadrunner…then released this under Virgin Records. So, I must ask, did Richard Branson have any idea what he about to promote?
While their first release only fiercely produced momentum, We Have Come For Your Parents kicks that ball of momentum off a never-ending cliff. The amount of energy the music gives off is akin old school punk, but contemporary enough to allow the gnashing fury to color it all in blood. This can be explained by the exceptionally graphic/violent lyrics that could only be delivered with Casey’s twelve-trick vocal style. He has his normal singing voice, a baritone speaking voice (just for the ladies), but a handful of shrieks and screams brought forth with so much energy that make you wonder how he doesn’t pass out at every live show.
Musically, there’s nothing really inventive, but when they utilize the metal-based punk well, it’s hard not to enjoy. They actually make use of both guitarists as well. For example, while one is playing the rhythm, the other one is shredding his feedback to pieces or playing dissonant but cohesive leads. Clean sound does not exist on this record, not even with the drums. Every instrument and vocal sequence is just as dirty and as the next. Thankfully, the focused and chaotic songwriting is varied enough in tempo and sound to eliminate any monotony.
Now, what goes better with violent music than violent lyrics, nothing, exactly, so thank hell Casey is pissed as ***. Topics range from nihility, abortion candy machines, political issues, religion, problems with society, and Calvin Klein, all with interesting results. The artwork suits as illustrations to these issues, littered with kids in catholic school uniforms doing really funny things (girls holding lollipops and dildos, flippin the bird to a crucifix, and other Children of the Corn freakiness).
The only thing you need to get from this is that this record is simple, straightforward, and lively hostile. The only problem one will have with this is the lyrics; other than that it’s just straight-up fun to listen to for its 40 minutes. Amen is a silly little band, but they surely have a lot to express on this release, and with their silly little ways they manage to scare everyone’s parents into burning your copy…to keep you from the TRUTH. But really, this is just solid music, and you’ll want to jump around like the pyro-anarchist your conscience hides.