Review Summary: Chugging like it's St. Patrick's Day.
For as long as technology allows lower frequencies to be presentable in a clean, somewhat audible manner, the war for the heaviest guitar tone and hugest kit will continue to be waged with sticks, stones, and bass strings. A desire to be dynamic and musically invigorated will continuously be replaced by the need to sap the life of genre pioneers until 7 octaves below middle C becomes progressive metal's sweetspot. Whether or not this is perceived to be a progression or the advent of regressive metal is outside of the question; if they could make it heavy, could we make it heavier？ Few are as involved and understanding of this auditory dong measuring contest than Humanity's Last Breath. While these gents can certainly navigate their instruments, it seems that all that low end is messing with their perception of individuality.
Much to the delight of many a Call of Duty montage editor, Detestor
comes with instrumental tracks. It was quite an exciting discovery as it allows a keener sense of attention to be paid to what the band are actually getting up to in the instrument department. Unfortunately, that isn't all too much. Regardless of key or tempo, you could interchange every riff in Detestor
with another riff, and you'd end up with the same EP. It's not to say the musicianship is bad; there is just no individuality between any of the songs, whatsoever. While it is incessantly clear Humanity's Last Breath like Vildhjarta, unlike their Swedish brothers in arms, they have no clue about cohesion or dynamics. A crushing assault may be the intention, but too much of one thing is never a good idea. The barrage of triplets and low-fret noodling over time became a character in my head that would pucker its lips and blow 0-shaped kisses while whispering things like "Meshuggah？ More like Meh-sugar" or "Of course we thall". In a disappointingly short period of time, Detestor
becomes stale and heaviness is replaced by mind-numbing repetition. A vocal performance about as expressive and versatile as Spock trapped in a washing machine permeates the full-cast-half of the EP, and ultimately it's difficult to say whether or not the non-instrumental side was even necessary in the first place.
A fellow colleague of mine once tried to convince me that "djent" was the best thing that ever happened to metal. The style is has had it's high points with the likes of Sikth, Meshuggah, and Martyr. Until bands such as Humanity's Last Breath come to realise that lows are not the facet one should focus on when writing a record, however, this post-modern progressive sound will only continue to receive the harsh judgement it does. Atmospheric headbangery may be the end goal; enticing an EP, this is not. They understand their demographic. The appeal for a remorselessly dense production tone may be widespread in the younger progressive audience, but Humanity's Last Breath have proven that even the densest chugging can't combat the songwriting of a dense mindset.
As a huge Vildhjarta (and recent Aokigahara) fan, I was terribly disappointed to come to this conclusion. Repeated play really shows the album's lack of depth, and songs are way too similar, causing this fairly short EP to drag on for what felt like an album's worth of time. Props to Buster for all his hard work on the record, but I can't justify anything more than a 2.0.
On a different note, hope y'all enjoyed the review! Constructive criticism is appreciated! Hope you are all having a great week!
my week has been fantastic so far, thankyou! and to top it off i'm going on a booze-cruise tonight, with an open bar to boot.
I could so do with something like that right now! Also awesome to see you understood Bar Sachiko... absolute stunner of a record. Got pretty intense at the half-way mark
Bar Sachiko is my hardest 5 tbqh.
Bar Sachiko is bar none
Was waiting to see what you'd bring with your first negative review, and you didn't disappoint. You have a really good balance of analysis from both personal and technical standpoints in your writing
There's a couple mistakes in here such as "The barage of triplets and low-fret noodling over time became a character in my head that would pucker it's lips".
"Every riff could be inter-placed with a riff from another track, tempo and key taken into consideration, and you would quite literally end up with the same EP" - This sentence reads a little choppy IMO. Rephrasing it to something like "Even when taking tempo and key into account, any riff could be inter-placed with another without affecting the EP's cohesiveness" or something would work better.
"The bouncy castle made of cement that the style is has had it's high points" - Same problem here. I like that you make effort to keep the overall tone nice and conversational but that's a bit much. I think you could drop the ~cement bouncy castle~ bit and just say "the style has had..."
Otherwise, nice work as usual, pls stick around! :D
Also, there's a proofreading thread in the forums here: http://www.sputnikmusic.com/forums/showthread.php?t=577035
I'm just saying this because you've made the "its/it's" mistake a couple of times now, so if you'd like one of the staffers or contribs to read over your review before you post it, just hit them up there : )
Also hey Nimb!
Thanks for the tips Jac! Actually tried posting this to the proof reading thread but had been having issues connecting to the site! I'll definitely do it in the future, and will edit the review accordingly!
lol at 'Of course we thall.'
Good review though. I definitely agree with you that there really isn't much in the way of memorable songs; it's like an amalgam of the worst parts of Vildhjarta, The Tony Danza Tapdance Extravaganza and Oceano. Yawn...
Digging: Shin Guard - 2020
Thanks dude! Didn't even think of Oceano after writing the review but now you say it, I see the resemblance, and that is terribly unfortunate. What an awful band
Yeah it's not that memorable. The mastermind behind this band was in Vildjharta at a certain point but Masstaden is on a whole different level of memorability. This is djunz, djunz and djunz.
Album Rating: 1.5
So generic djentcore huh.
Digging: The Offering - Home
@ the reviewer: Aokigahara mix a lot of genres in their work but the two main clusters of inspiration (00s post-hardcore and djunz) are clearly definable and it sounds like they are just replicating others people work and blend them all together
I dunno about you, but The Mars Volta don't sound anything like 00s post-hardcore. Aokigahara might sound derivative, but the noise they make is still considerably more diverse and intriguing than this. Ultimately, blending other styles is the only thing you can do to become original. Everyone has done everything before; some people just hide their plagiarism better than others.
What a generic, stupid fucking band name.
"I dunno about you, but The Mars Volta don't sound anything like 00s post-hardcore. Aokigahara might sound derivative, but the noise they make is still considerably more diverse and intriguing than this. Ultimately, blending other styles is the only thing you can do to become original. Everyone has done everything before; some people just hide their plagiarism better than others."
These guys all rip-off Meshuggah, as they like to say. I hear a lot of influences from bands such as Postman Syndrome, Fall of Troy, Saosin.. Rather than The Mars Volta (At the Drive-In is more similar). The problem I have with it is that it seems like they went "yeah well we like two things in music let's just do a post-hc bridge and then follow it with the djunz and it's all gonna be ok". Just my two cents anyway.
Uneven Structure are anyway the masters of ambient-influenced djent, if someone wants some atmospheric sh*t there's nothing better than Februus imho.
Still find Aokigahara considerably more enjoyable than HLB. Everyone and their mum rips off Meshuggah in prog now. Agree about Feebrus, killer album
Yeah they're definitely more enjoyable than this, I wasn't trying to make comparisons or anything :p