Review Summary: A noticeable departure from the band’s original sound.
The band’s first album, Fused Together In Revolving Doors, was a quirky and heavy album influenced by grind, death metal, hardcore, and jazz. With Clients the band toned down their sound to a certain extent and decided to go a more straightforward route, which is in no way a bad thing. With Clients the band throws their spastic tendencies aside and trades them in for tried and true metalcore/hardcore influences.
Fixation On Plastics comes out of the corner swinging at full force. Lightening fast blast beats charge straight at you with maximum intensity as Guy unleashes a deep guttural growl. The next riff begins with a familiar chug/pinch harmonic riffs then cycles through a much used hardcore chord progression, only to be topped off by something of a throwback thrash/90’s hardcore (think Sick of It All) riff. The next song, Lay The Tarp starts out at a much comfortable speed, providing much needed break after the onslaught of the first track. The break doesn’t last long as the band throws a curveball at you and goes at full speed once again with pounding double bass and Mckenzie’s blistering guitar work. There is also an interesting overdub with octaves at 2:31-2:40.
Black Santa, Antman, and the title track differ greatly from the focus of this album and seem more reminiscent of material off Fused Together In Revolving Doors. Each song features spazzy(sometimes silly) riffing and Antman has some odd sounding harmonies after the intro but soon changes to more thrash influenced chugging. Clients, while being extremely short, is a major highlight of the album, showcasing the grind song structures found on the first album. The majority of the album follows the same format as the previously mentioned 5 tracks and their isn’t any need to go into detail about the rest, except for the last track.
The final track on Clients is He Was Dead When I Got There, one of The Red Chord’s classic instrumentals. It’s an slow burning epic featuring elements from everything from early metal, southern rock/metal, and blues(to a lesser degree, mostly in the lead parts). The track is played at a very slow but consistent pace that draws you in from right from the start. Also, a distorted voice is heard talking in certain parts of the song and to end it all the song finishes at around 6:20 and segues into a phone conversation of a man telling someone how he allegedly made out with a 19 year old girl (three times no less) and touched her boob over the bra but couldn’t quite go down south. They obviously chose to end the album with a stroke of class.
Overall I consider this to be another gem in The Red Chord’s discography. It may not be as unique or interesting as the first album, and it may not have as many memorable songs as its successor but it remains another highlight of their career.
-Lay The Tarp
-He Was Dead When I Got There