Music Review: BELIEVER – Transhuman

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believer - transhumanBELIEVER
Transhuman
Metal Blade
2011

Two years after the release of Believer’s comeback album Gabriel, the band released the followup Transhuman. There was much speculation as to if Transhuman would be a return to their progressive thrash roots. It wasn’t, but this is not necessarily a bad thing.

Going into this, I rather figured that Transhuman would follow down the path started with Gabriel. Believer was always about musical progression over style; I would have been surprised if they had released something like their first three releases.

First, I’d like to point out that the album cover art is fantastic. The eerie model and negative space seem perfectly fitting for the music contained inside. And speaking of the music (flawless segway, there), I have to say that, generally speaking, Transhuman is probably the darkest album I’ve heard coming from these guys. While there are some spots where the classic sounding Believer comes through, like on “Clean Room” and “Ego Machine”, for the most part the songs on this album are more mid-paced, incorporating more of the dark industrial flavors here with the progressive style. Don’t get me wrong, there are some really good guitar riffs on the songs, along with some good melodies and musical textures. “Lie Awake” starts off the album that way, giving an idea of the journey you’re going to be taking with this release. “GUT”, “Multiverse”, “End Of Infinity” and “Transfiguration” continue with the dark progressive metal style; “Currents” is more of an ambient, dark EBM spacy instrumental that has a good guitar riff; “Traveler” continues with the dark, mid-paced progressive route, while “Being No One” features a good thrashy riff and a solid hook, while retaining the dark progressive quality, while “Entanglement” and “Mindsteps” end the album like it began: dark, moody and epic sounding.

Overall, Transhuman is an album that requires more than just a couple of spins for everything to really kick in. But, I’ve found that it really does prove itself to be a good quality album, just not in the classic Believer vein. Transhuman is more cerebral, both musically and lyrically, and while it may not be the band’s masterpiece, it’s definitely worth more than just a couple of cursory listens. Recommended.

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NECRO SHOCK RADIO – 4-8-2017

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APRIL 8, 2017

Not even having a massive head cold will stop Uncle NecRo from dispensing the Brutal Music Therapy!

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Music Review: DEMON HUNTER – Outlive

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demon hunter outliveDEMON HUNTER
Outlive
Solid State Records
2017

After fifteen years since their self-titled debut album, it’s no denying that Demon Hunter has evolved and forged ahead with its signature sound, rather than continue on with the same-old and remain stagnant. To put it bluntly, they are a far cry from the Slipknot style of metal, complete with Good Cop/Bad Cop vocals. I joke that they have transformed into more of a HIM-style metal band, but that’s really what has happened, fifteen years later.

Outlive, the band’s newest release as of this writing, showcases the band as getting better with age. While the previous release was rather hit-or-miss for me, I found Outlive to be a more solid listening experience. While the majority of the cuts could be tagged as “radio friendly” and melodic, the songs are heavier and darker than your standard modern pop metal song. Ryan Clark does favor the melodic singing more over the angry growly shouts, and he sounds much more comfortable with that, giving the songs a texture and depth that manage to haunt you while the heaviness sticks in your head.

Make no mistake, though: Outlive is multi-layered and very textured \,,/METAL\,,/, comfortable with treading familiar ground while not being afraid to experiment with touches of death metal, groove metal, dark gothic and straight-ahead rock and a bit of industrial for some texturing. Even then, they still manage to throw in a classic deathcore aggression like “Jesus Wept” and “Cold Blood” to sandblast your face off.

Overall, while I wasn’t sure what I was going to be getting into before listening to Outlive (the pre-release video for the single “Died In My Sleep” didn’t exactly set my world afire), I still purchased the download on Amazon the day of its release. After playing it back-to-front a couple of times, I have to say that it is a very solid release, more so than the previous.

NECRO SHOCK RADIO – February 11, 2017

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February 11, 2017

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NECRO SHOCK RADIO – February 4, 2017

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FEBRUARY 4th, 2017

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NECRO SHOCK RADIO – January 7, 2017

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JANUARY 7, 2017

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Uncle NecRo’s XMAS SPECIAL 2016

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