The Handshake Murders
Usurper


3.0
good

Review

by Nikkolae USER (21 Reviews)
November 29th, 2009 | 5 replies


Release Date: 2007 | Tracklist

Review Summary: Sludge Metal With A Badass Hardcore Attitude But Not Much Else

Coherency
Bands are built up and taken apart thanks to this word, a coherent band is a band who finds its own sense of persona in its music, and its bound to follow the path that flows the best in their evolution, either its because it just flows naturally in them, or at that point in time it felt like the right progression to follow
That being said, an incoherent band will only find itself jumping around genres trying to figure it out something to make their sound click inside them, trying to find its soul if you will, because in the end, thats what music is supposed to be, a window to one's soul, music is supposed to be about sending a message

The message got lost in translation right here

Over-produced might be a word to describe The Handshake Murder's debut, it comes out as an album that has been thought over way too much, and it just doesn't flow naturally, yes the guitars might have that epileptic-like sound at points, and they might have very good sings of progression to it, but it just doesn't come off naturally unlike bands like meshuggah, it sounds pushy in THM, its like they just took a bit of metal-core, a bit of progressive, put it all in the blender and just ran with the product they got, the track list is just a plus

Dissector kicks things started, a nice way to start it, it pretty much sets the tone for the whole album despite a few minor changes from song to song like the “loops” (We'll get to that later), the vocals are rash, very good guitar work, it has a very nice tapping solo-ish moment
In it, most tracks here are very heavy, they have very few melodic moments in them(if any), and all follow into what some might say sounds like an on-going breakdown, very slow, muddy and punch-in-the-gut like riffs

songs like Error give you a little room to breath in the midst of all the chaos, but don't get fooled, it only lasts less than a minute, and after its over your brought back to the beat down of a record this is supposed to be, Painted contortionist follows Error, not only does it have a nice industrial-y intro to it, the vocals here are rather enjoyable also which is a very welcome surprise given that the vocalist sustains a very neutral tone of screams, not too high, not too low, just around the same range,

The vocals ohh the vocals, now don't kill me, but I haven't listened to Coalesce before listening to this until I heard all the critics saying that Jayson vocals were exactly the same to Coalesce’s singer, so as a wanna-be-good reviewer I did my research and, they sound exactly the same
Its not a bad thing really, its just that they sound so alike that you cant help but pondering on the whys of this, it could very well be the pitch in his voice, given, but then again if you listen to the whole sound of THM and compare it to Coalesce’s you will very easily find places to draw parallels between the two bands

The album does feel very inconsistent, in fact, the “loop” like parts of songs (I.E. Painted Contortionist, Mind Bender) sound very awkwardly juxtaposed with the surrounding sound of the songs, and screaming lines like “I'll Rip Your Throat Out” over and over again doesn't make it any better

All in all this is not a bad record, its in fact very well performed by the band, it does have a nice sound to it, and all the songs do sound like they were made by the same band if you will, the problem with it is that you might have a really hard time differencing one track from the other, and that's what makes this album so bland, because it really does feel like you listen to the same track for 30+ minutes



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user ratings (25)
Chart.
3.3
great

Comments:Add a Comment 
Nikkolae
November 29th 2009


4860 Comments

Album Rating: 3.5

First Review!

Digging: Cursed Graves - Western Blood

WhiteTieBlackJacket
November 29th 2009


792 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

Um, no

Nikkolae
December 1st 2009


4860 Comments

Album Rating: 3.5

thinking about taking this down to a 3, idk maybe later

Rhinoceron
April 12th 2010


94 Comments


This is indeed a well written review.

However, I'm sure you expected someone to come along and make a criticism about your lack of periods and/or overuse of commas. But your newest review seems to conform properly to those standards, so whatever. Good job.

WhiteTieBlackJacket
July 19th 2010


792 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

"and it just doesn't flow naturally" ~ This refers to your review, sweetie.



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