Johnny Truant
In the Library of Horrific Events


4.5
superb

Review

by Dan Smith USER (74 Reviews)
January 19th, 2006 | 488 replies | 26,409 views


Release Date: 2005 | Tracklist


3 of 5 thought this review was well written

Johnny Truant are an up-and-coming metal band from the UK. They don't conform to the current "fashioncore" trends. They don't make commercially viable radio songs. They are unrelenting. And most importantly, they ***ING ROCK!!!

Produced by Adam D. (I'm ***ed if I'm gonna attempt to spell that guy's surname), you'd expect this to be heavier than a truckload of sumos. You WILL NOT be disappointed!

As soon as "I Love You Even Though You're A Zombie Now" blasts out of the speakers and kicks a hole in your skull, you know this is going to be one fun, and ***ed-up ride. The guitars crunch, and engage in some absolutely frantic riffing, the drums are constantly twirling in and out of various insane beats, the bass locks in intricately with the drumming, and the vocals are positively beastlike, reverting between full on screams and growling, and a slightly cleaner (only slightly I must stress!) sort of yelp. These are traits which will continue throughout the album.

"The Bloodening" has a more hardcore edge, and some violent lyrics ("you still have your limbs, so you can run" and "BURY THE CORPSES!!!" for example), and yet more frantic riffing, before going into a quieter section driven predominantly by bass and drums. It's times like these that you could most probably agree with the "emo band playing death metal" descriptions that have been levelled at the band in the past. The mosh part with its feral screams and ominous guitar parts hammers the point home.

A hell of a groove is to be found at the start of "Realist Surrealist" just before Olly screams "LET'S ROCK!" As cliched as this may sound, you truly won't care when you hear the carnage that follows. A statement of intent indeed. Later on, the song hits a slightly more "emo" direction, with some almost-spoken vocals. The amazing drumwork never lets up, and the minor chord work of the guitar only adds to the effect of the band showing a slightly less brutal side.

"Dirty Vampire Feeding Frenzy" begins with a simple but effective sort of juddering guitar riff, which threads in and out of various sections which feature some absolutely evil vocals. Suddenly it all goes a bit Sabbath on us, with a slow section that wouldn't be out of place if it was shoved into the mid section of "War Pigs"!!! Following this is a brilliant instrumental part. The bass (with a nice echo effect) provides the backbone for the precision drumwork, and sublime, wandering guitar riff. Just when you're lulled into a false sense of security, the Truant hit the pedal to the metal again, and repeat aformentioned instrumental at absolute fever pitch and with added screaming and growling for good measure.

"Throne Vertigo" kicks off with a beautiful melodic delay-drenched guitar intro, and the verse which follows is much less heavier than previous tracks, almost betraying a bare skeleton of emo... then having been commanded to "bring our weapons to the disco," the pace picks right up for a frantic coda before the haunting intro is repeated and leads into a more hardcore-tinged section. This may be the shortest song on the album, but it's also one of the hardest hitting, and it shows most of the schizophrenic musical personalities of Johnny Truant perfectly.

"Vultures" is a clean and subdued musical intermission, with a nicely picked guitar line and simplistic but effective drumwork (mainly military drumrolls). The haunting high pitched guitar lines placed here and there send shivers down the spine.

Just when "Vultures" has gotten you all daydreamy and relaxed, "A Day In The Death" comes along to shatter the calm. A torrent of crunching riffs veering off along widdly tangents, and an incredibly emotional and fiery vocal delivery make this a definite highlight.

A slow and calculated intro slowly builds up to the absolute noiseblast of the main riff of "The Necropolis Junction," a mixed bag of a song, which features mad riffs and blastbeats in places, and lulls into slower repetitive sections in others. The lyrics such as "the clouds are dripping poison" and the ominous guitar riffs give an incredibly effective atmosphere of unease.

"I The Exploder" starts as mere noises, vague hints of bassline and wisps of guitar, which build up to an eerie guitar riff, punctuated with odd hits of crash cymbal. The main part of the song then catches the listener off guard, and proceeds to slowly but surely bludgeon and beat them into submission, before hitting a frantic crescendo and a great riff packed full of pinch harmonics and sheer venom. Gang vocals scream "I AM THE EXPLODER!" heralding yet another great section of the song, this time featuring more exemplary drumwork. In case you hadn't realised by this point, JT aren't a band who like to use the old verse-chorus-verse schtick. The spice of variety is much more apparent than anything else.

Ringing feedback, and a fantastic drum section (which sounds kind of "far away" to begin with, slowly coming "into focus"... hard to explain but you'll know what I mean when you hear it) kick off the epic closer "Footprints In The Thunder." Soon joined by an evil riff, this all makes for an incredibly atmospheric intro to a varied, brutal, and epic sounding closing track. There's even an acoustic section (brief, but it's there!) Notably, this is also the only track to feature some tuneful sung vocals. These build up in the background towards the end to great effect. What a way to end the album!!!

In short, Johnny Truant have perfected their blend of metal, hardcore, emo (more in lyrics than in sound), straight up riff-o-rama rock, atmospherics, and great musicianship on "In The Library Of Horrific Events." Every track stands alone as an exemplary piece of work. If you like your metal heavy, brutal, unrelenting, heartfelt and honest, you NEED THIS ALBUM!!!

(4.5/5)



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Comments:Add a Comment 
Jubella
January 19th 2006



27 Comments


Great review! I've heard the bloodening and it's an amazing song. I think i'm really gonna get this album

Dancin' Man
January 19th 2006



719 Comments

Album Rating: 2.5

Pretty decent band and decent review. You need to go a little more in depth critiquing the album, but this is alright. I give it a 4/5 for now.

spoon_of_grimbo
January 28th 2006



2240 Comments

Album Rating: 4.5

the bloodening is only the tip of the iceberg, this album is amazing!!!

incedentally, anyone read "house of leaves," the novel where JT get their name from? i've just started reading it a few days ago, and its rly rly weird (in a rly gud way).

spoon_of_grimbo
April 8th 2006



2240 Comments

Album Rating: 4.5

give it a few more listens. i recommend downloading "throne vertigo" "dirty vampire feeding frenzy" "the bloodening" and "footprints in the thunder". they'll pretty much demonstrate the various sounds and moods of JT. it took some getting into for me, but persevere and its worth it.

Whiskey On The Rocks
April 8th 2006



36 Comments


i totally agree with the review, i think they're among the best bands playing in the UK atm...IMO the best is Mendeed. Classy stuff, great review :D

spoon_of_grimbo
April 9th 2006



2240 Comments

Album Rating: 4.5

whiskey, thou speakst the truth!!! what we need is a triple headlining tour of JT, Mendeed, and Sylosis (another rly gud british metal band). to be honest, i found about most of these through UKMU (UK metal underground), on myspace. they've pretty much got their finger on the pulse. its rarely i'd agree with a rock publication on every band they cite as brilliant, but i gotta say, i'v liked everything i've heard thru UKMU.

Confessed2005
April 9th 2006



3314 Comments

Album Rating: 4.5

I have heard a track called 'Consider Us Dead' and it was pretty cool. Need to get some more - how about a review on Sylosis then Grimbo?

Dancin' Man
April 9th 2006



719 Comments

Album Rating: 2.5

changed my mind. It's starting to feel really samey.

spoon_of_grimbo
April 10th 2006



2240 Comments

Album Rating: 4.5

"Consider Us Dead" is from JT's debut, "The Repercusssions Of A Badly Planned Suicide." Its not quite as dark as this album, and features the odd sung vocal as well. I might review it soon actually.

However, I can't really do a Sylosis review, since I've only heard one song (on www.myspace.com/sylosis) but I'm planning on getting the EP when I next get paid, so I'll review it then. I'll tell thee what though, that one song is enough to convert anyone!

Whiskey On The Rocks
June 29th 2006



36 Comments


these guys were sick at download, they opened with day in the death...and sikth were on straight after....what a weekend lol

spoon_of_grimbo
June 29th 2006



2240 Comments

Album Rating: 4.5

im gutted i missed that, sikth's new album is fucking excellent!!! every JT tour has had great support bands, like architects being a great example, whose album i shall most likely review soon.

must get round to seeing all of those aforementioned bands live sometime!

Whiskey On The Rocks
July 13th 2006



36 Comments


OOOH my days my band gets to play with sylosis and centurion on august 7th wooooo.....sorry about that

Wizard
November 11th 2006



19210 Comments

Album Rating: 3.0

I picked this album yesterday. One of the best metalcore albums ever. You perfectly describe it in your review as "unrelenting". Great review and a killer album.

Digging: Monarch - Sabbracadaver

jrowa001
April 16th 2007



8750 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

just got this album today, been procrastinating for too long. i love this cd. they remind me of parway drive but a bit more grindier. good review

spoon_of_grimbo
April 17th 2007



2240 Comments

Album Rating: 4.5

that's a pretty good comparison tbh. although my mate who introduced me to this album described the quiet bit in "the bloodening" as a "bloc-party breakdown" which i thought was quite funny!

btw, anyone else noticed how nicely adam d ripped off the "realist surrealist" groove riff in killswitch's "my curse"? the plagiarising bastard.

Confessed2005
May 27th 2007



3314 Comments

Album Rating: 4.5

I only have material from their debut album. But I seriously want to get this.

House of Leaves is a fantastic book by the way Grimbo.

georgeiv
July 27th 2007



17 Comments

Album Rating: 4.5

Brilliant review I've had this album for over qa year and it never gets boring.

spoon_of_grimbo
August 10th 2007



2240 Comments

Album Rating: 4.5

i just got my copy of HoL back from a mate the other day, i'm gonna start reading it again soon. probably while listening to this album and some ominous sounding atmospheric stuff too. y'know, cuz i like scaring the shit out of myself...

Confessed2005
August 10th 2007



3314 Comments

Album Rating: 4.5

lol

it's a damn weird book but a surefire way to scare yourself.

existanceisfutile
January 2nd 2008



11 Comments

Album Rating: 4.5

I've been listening to this album so much. Probably one of my favourites if not my favourite.

I'm psyched for their next album. : D



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