As a maturing adult with many memorable life experiences, I think bullsh*t can be spotted a mile away. We've all have hard times when we see someone or hear something that makes us feel uncomfortable for no good reason, but we always hold our gut feelings over fact itself no matter what happens. With that being said, I'd like to share a little tale about a negative atmosphere I sensed after hearing some fishy news about the union of Daath and Roadrunner Records in 2006.
It usually isn't a big deal when a label picks up a band; however, I felt my bullsh*t meter hitting an all-time high when I got wind of Roadrunner's latest pickup. I never liked our friends at Roadrunner, because they always favored trendy poopers over real substance, and I felt the signing of Daath was a bit too hazy for such a record company. Needless to say, Roadrunner hyped Daath's label debut, The Hinderers, as a real death metal album until the spotlight was focused on this mysterious faction, which was a very clever move, because they forgot to mention something during all the press: Daath isn't death metal!
What a surprise, right? Roadrunner Records had once again done the unexpected by switching terms to get more sales from devoted metal fans. With the sarcasm sidelined, The Hinderers is all you could expect, meaning it's a ridiculous attempt to sound heavy and brutal, but is actually one of the worst efforts in both heavy metal, and mainstream rock. To put it in simple terms: it sucks in every way you could possibly think of.
Why is this album so terrible? Well, there are countless reasons, but I think Daath's self-proclaimed "death metal" approach unquestionably takes the cake. The Hinderers is not a death metal album in any way at all, but rather a mindless tribute to Devildriver, Static-X, Fear Factory, and other mallcore bands under the impression they are somehow metal. Everything that makes nu-metal so awful is glorified here, including repetitive groove riffs, poorly-performed solos, terrible lyrics, directionless samples, and almost no bass audio at all. Sure the singer uses growling vocals and you'll hear the occasional blastbeat section, but does that instantly grant a death metal label to whoever uses it? I didn't think so.
Beside all the nu-metal masturbation, The Hinderers is ruined by failed attempts to sound epic, annoying electronica beeps, horrible growling vocals, and guitar playing with no technical qualities whatsoever. All these problems are found in every waking moment of this CD, but some of the tunes deserve an award for how sh*tty they are. Here's some of the nominations and a brief reason why they should be acknowledged: "Cosmic Forge," because it has sloppy piano arrangements with awful vocal patterns; "From The Blind," because it's covered in total nu-metal riffing and has a horrible chorus; "Festival Mass Soulform," because it sounds like an actual circus with a ghastly attempt to play a revolving keyboard pattern over dumb groove riffs, and the viewer's choice: "Dead on The Dance Floor," because it's a disco-laden tribute to Saturday Night Fever with dance beats and some of the worst instrumentation I've ever heard. "Ovum" is the one song worth mentioning because it actually sounds somewhat metal, but it still suffers from constant repetition, breakdowns, and a JUMPDAF**KUP chorus. I'm convinced a teebag from a walrus would be more enjoyable than hearing this bowel movement again, and that's total honesty.
I concluded Daath to be musically worthless ages ago, but the grueling reviewing process of The Hinderers has opened my eyes to the philosophical attack this group is trying to execute. The rules of death metal have been practically spoon fed to its followers, but Daath apparently thinks they can just defecate on everything that made brutal music what it is today and do things their own way. Death metal touches have been forced unwillingly into a melting pot of nu-metal and electronica among other lame things, but here's the catch: it's considered good death metal by the mainstream! Folks with no death metal experience will hear this and assume this is what death metal is supposed to be; they'll hear the disco, the nu-metal, the breakdowns, and they'll want more of it. It's much like the fiasco of Trivium being a thrash group, but with a more fragile genre, and certainly one that hasn't gained any modern exposure at all. Daath has the power to screw over the virtues of death metal with the flick of their wrists, and the chance of them doing so is heavily increased by the band's growing base of mindless zombies who ignore true talent and worship what's hip to them. It's a sad reality, but one must realize it is a very likely scenario with The Hinderers floating around.
Bad things have passed my ears before, but The Hinderers is one of the most repulsive musical attempts I've ever heard. No argument of any kind could convince me this is decent music on any level, and I think it's a total embarrassment to death metal in every way possible. Nu-metal mallgoths will certainly orgy to this, but anyone who takes their metal seriously should simply leave The Hinderers on the rack and let the posers have fun. Not sure about you guys, but I think this record deserves a score you can see through: a zero.