Contaminated - Relapse Records
Sampler Vol. 7 Review
* indicates that I have not heard this
band before listening to this sampler
Mastodon - Blood and Thunder
Mastodon are simply one of the most groundbreaking,
innovative and interesting rock/metal bands around today - melody, musicianship,
power, brutality, song-writing ability - they have it all. Unfortunately
(for Relapse) they have signed with a major label (Warner Bros I believe?),
but their releases on Relapse Records are simply brilliant. If you don't
know who these guys are - take corrective action.
High on Fire - Devilution
A catchy stoner rock/metal track from a
band that formed from the ashes of the 'legendary stoner/metal' band Sleep.
Features Mike Patt from Sleep on guitars/vocals as well as Joe Preseton
who played with The Melvins and Earth.
The Dillinger Escape Plan - Setting
Fire to Sleeping Giants
The extremely powerful Dillinger Escape
Plan - what can be said about them? They fuse hardcore, mathcore, power
violence and grind with jazz-leanings. Their newest album is a fair bit
more accessible than their debut, but brutal, aggressive and skull-shattering
none the less - they have compromised nothing. One of Relapse Record's
greatest assets and one mind-blowing release (Miss Machine).
Nile - Lashed to the Slave Stick
Breaking new ground for brutal technical
death metal come these Egyptian mythology-obsessed gods. If you want to
see the violent and cruel evolution of Morbid Angel look no further. Intensely
dark and relentless. Their musicianship will blow your mind - especially
that of (current) drummer George Kollias.
Pig Destroyer - Gravedancer
Another brilliant innovator! Pig Destroyer
are here to redefine grind as we know it with the sporadic, violent and
brilliantly-written poetic laments of J. R. Hayes and the breath-takingly
fresh riffing of Scott Hull (Agoraphobic Nosebleed, Anal c***). Combines
punk, hardcore, thrash, death and grind into a grotesque grind beast -
they have achieved more as a three piece than most bands ever could with
Zeke - Chinatown
Zeke are a kick-ass thrashy, rock &
and roll come punk band. Catchy riffs and stylish solos - like The Dwarves
sped up with that unmistakable Motorhead attitude. Sex, drugs and f***in'
rock & roll - a simple formula that only a band with punk rock in its
blood can seem to pull off.
Planes Mistaken for Stars - Thunder
in the Night Forever*
A somewhat melodic punk-rock band. I can't
seem to find any info on this band (not even on the Relapse site!), but
they seem decent enough.
Unsane - Release*
A particularly abrasive noisy rock band
- metallic riffs, distorted vocals, cool rhythms, all cemented with an
aggressive attitude. The song didn't really grab me, though it wasn't bad
enough for me to discount the band.
Soilent Green - Leaves of Three*
Soilent Green are a catchy, sludgy death/grind
band. On this track they constantly switch between rapid-fire grind and
Eyehategod style sludge - and pull off the mixture of contrasting styles
surprisingly well. With a guitar tone that's as raw as hell, you know I've
gotta go check out a few more of their tracks.
Cephalic Carnage - Dying Will be the
Death of Me*
F*cking killer! Think Mastodon though more
death/grind-orientated. You've still got those cool harmonic guitar interplays
and bursts of technical brilliance in-between passages of grinding sludge
and head banging death/rock goodness - and possible most unexpected of
all, some clean vocals! Melody? Death/grind/sludge/rock? Where do I sign?!
Extremely eclectic stuff here - definitely impressive.
Necrophagist - Seven
I don't know about you guys, but I love
brutal and technical death metal. Generic death metal (ie: Deicide) bores
the s*** out of me. These guys are breaking new ground in technical death
metal. Mind-bending technicality - imagine if Malmsteen played death metal
and this would be the result. Really different, innovative riffs, somewhat
in the vein of Cryptopsy, Nile and Origin. Damn cool.
Zombi - Orion*
Weird electronica s*** - sounds a bit like
those Asian RPG games you used to play on the Super Nintendo. Not mindless
electronica like mainstream techno or dance, but understandably, still
not my thing…
Buried Inside - Time as Ideology*
Whoa - this is certainly hard to describe.
Really off-the-wall, violent metalcore - but that's not a negative thing.
They manage to inject some real energy and originality into their music
with cool instrumental interplays, abstract lyrics and aggressive screams.
A wall of dissonant noise and layed riffs. My interest is officially piqued.
Burst - Crystal Asunder*
What can be said about the Swedish melodic
death band Burst? Quite similar to Buried Inside but with some added dynamics
of melodic, clean vocals, some progressive and doom elements. More rooted
in melodic death with some metalcore influences, much cleaner production.
Leng Tch'e - Clarity Denied (demo version)
Ahh, the brutal Leng Tch'e! What can I
say, I f***in' love these guys - brutal grind with punk, rock and hardcore
leanings, as well as a few gore/grind elements. How can you go wrong with
the drummer from Aborted? Another exciting, progressive grind band from
Cretin - Stim Fit*
This track didn't really catchy my ear.
They're brutal grind, but the production hinders the band from having any
meaningful impact - the guitars are too far into the background, the drums
slowly fading into crowded backnoise. With better production they might
actually be something.
The End - Dead Martyr
Combining technical death metal with hardcore-influenced-grindcore,
The End are a brutal Canadian outfit I look forward to hearing more of
in the future. They'll batter you with tricky time signatures, grinding
metallic riffs and blast beats - then head into a stoner metal influenced
departure until pummelling you once more with a brutal breakdown. Features
the Burnt by the Sun vocalist.
Origin - The Burner
How I love Origin. They introduced me to
technical death metal with their epic album Informis, Infinitas, Inhumanitas.
Absolutely relentless - there is no other way to describe it. The dual-vocal
attack, the catchy licks on top of the brutal, chugging juggernaut of grind.
Jack-hammer brutality that refuses to let up for an instant. Listening
to them is physically taxing. I lament the departure of the mighty John
Longstreth however - an infinitesimal drop in drumming technicality can
be noted - but no where enough to affect the enjoyment of this amazing
If you are unacquainted with some of Relapse
Records awesome variety of metal, hardcore and rock get this disc - it'll
open up doors to musical directions you would have never otherwise known
existed. This sampler solidifies my image of Relapse as the most progressive
and evolutionary label around today - a ridiculous variety of music and
all of it top-f***in'-notch!
CD Info and Links
Contaminated - Relapse Records Sampler
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