Thursday, August 24, 2006

Album Review - Dismember: “The God That Never Was”

Unwavering and unfaltering, Dismember are one of the founding fathers of old-school European death metal. Other bands who got their start at the same time either changed to another form of death metal, don’t play death metal at all any more, or broke up. With death metal coming back, Dismember is now doing a lot more touring as well.

The dead giveaway to old school European death metal is that signature buzzin’ guitar sound. Known as the “double distortion” or “sun studio” guitar sound, nothing lets you know quicker than that guitar sound. When the vocals are going, the music is typically about brutality, but when the vocals aren’t going on and it’s time for an instrumental break, you’ll get the treat of hearing Iron Maiden inspired harmonies and guitar solos, to thrashier moments of good old 80's thrash inspired solos. The more melodic and harmonious moments give Dismember that feeling of being in a transitional period of going from old school European death metal to melodic death metal, without ever actually finishing the journey. It’s actually pretty interesting when you think of it like that, as most bands wouldn’t want to try and nail a transitional period in their career. In fact, it’s as if they were starting to progress, then stopped.

Of course with all the old school European death metal out there, as well as the absolutely huge amount of general death metal to choose from, it begs the question if this is an essential release. Or even a required release. Sure, “The God That Never Was” does everything the right way, properly executed in every way, but you’ve heard this variation on death metal done better before, even by Dismember.



Regain Records


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