Review Summary: A true testament that not all former nu metal bands are stagnant and hopeless
Despite the fact they were one of the better nu metal bands back in the day, Rikets, like everyone else in their position, had to progress away from the dying genre in order to stay relevant. Even in 2005, when they released their first album, a five-track Ep called Anything For The Devil
, Rikets had clearly missed the train. The Ep was good, yes, but by that time, was already superfluous; just a solid effort to go down as one of the last good nu metal records to see the daylight (which is actually saying something, as there wasn't exactly an overabundance of good nu metal albums)
Rikets clearly took the time to fully evaluate the situation they were in after releasing Anything For The Devil
, as All American Death Cult
is the best kind of album one could desire from a former nu metal group. During the last few years Rikets have progressed from a solid nu metal band to a full-forced modern metal act. They haven’t completely shed their nu metal roots, which pop up from time to time on All American Death Cult
, but now Rikets can best be described as an aggressive, industrialized modern metal act (Note: not to mix up with industrial metal).
What makes All American Death Cult
so great (of a surprise) is the band’s skill to use their main musical weapon to maximum effect. The thick, groove-filled, chunky riffs the guitarists belt out are powerful, catchy, strong and most notably, memorable. What Rikets lack in technicality they make up with aggression and fierceness. The slightly distorted guitarlines coupled with Scott Rose’s dominant, screamed vocals make for an excellent pair. Add to that the carefully implemented industrial undertones, and you’ve got a winning combination. Straight from the boisterous "Program The Dead", the album sets itself to an aggressive, burning path; a path Rikets inexorably follow to the end.
All American Death Cult
displays Rikets as an all grown-up band of musicians. True, the boys in Rikets are still obviously extremely hate-fueled, but they’ve traded overbearing angst for true aggression and instead of expressing their antagonism exclusively in immature and corny lyrics, like they did on the Anything For The Devil
Ep, they now deliver it in a well-packaged ball of musical fury. The lyrics are still Rikets’ weak spot, but they have significantly improved since the Anything For The Devil
Ep days, and Rikets now exhibit such musical proficiency which enables to overlook a weak lyric or two.
Especially noteworthy about this album is how even the smallest of details and touches work to the fullest due to the massive amount of chemistry Rikets exhibit as a unit. The best example of this is the song "Sold Me Out". Tell me, how many other metal bands you know can make a near four-minute song that mainly stays in the boundaries of 3-4 notes, yet doesn’t get boring one bit? That’s exactly what Rikets did with "Sold Me Out" - a song that almost never leaves its comfortable 3-note zone, yet is infectiously catchy and has surprisingly sound replay value. The rest of the album is also riddled with well-working little details akin in importance; shaky little things which usually might break an album, but in Rikets' case, only strengthen it.
All American Death Cult
is a testament that not all former nu metal bands suck serious dong, and Rikets are one of the most sure-handed exceptions to the rule. While the fundamental elements for Rikets' sound will forever lie deep down in nu metal, they’ve done well to work themselves up to a venerable modern metal act. If they continue to undertake things like the brilliantly executed remake of 1980’s cult classic "Cry Little Sister" (featuring no other than the man behind this dazzling song, Gerard Mcmann), Rikets have a very bright future ahead of them.