By Brassik Lynt
In the field of heavy metal/ hard rock, some bands try their very best to push forward the template to an otherwise limited genre. At The Drive-In broke the whole bloody thing with 'Relationship Of Command', and bands like Tool and System Of A Down constantly push the envelope. However, for every 'Lateralus', there's always a 'Meteora'.
Content with revisiting the same old sound, some bands just can't seem (or won't bother) to search for anything new. Nu-metal showed us that with the right producer, the right amount of technology, and the right amount of shouty angst, anyone could be a star. Even Fred Durst managed to get away with a song called 'My Generation', despite the fact he's a 42-year-old. Baggy pants, bad grammar and a baseball cap were all you needed, and it looks like Brassik Lynt have all three in abundance. Hey, they've got the name at least.
'Instead?' is the first track on this three song offering, and despite the fact that these guys have fucking good production values on their packaging (shrink wrapped and everything!), the tunes could do with a little tinkering. Hard, loud and with the blatant American accent, everything that should be here for a nu-metal track is. Chugging guitars and steady beats are all present, as is the angst - "it makes me strain to stay alive". I guess it's not that un-listenable, but the strained vocals seem a bit off the mark.
'Profits From Me' is the intriguingly titled second track, and starts off by sounding like some demo song you'd hear in a guitar shop. All squealy leads and up-tempo, no- nonsense drumming. "I bought your CD / but all you did / was count your profits from me" goes one line from the song, and as you can tell, these boys are angry. Chugging riffage and shouty vocals are here again, but at least they have a nice verse sound, which incorporates one of my favourite gadgets ever - the delay pedal.
Uh oh. Why does metal have this fascination with chorus pedals? Here it is, sounding like some Metallica off cut, all nice riffs processed in that chorus box. 'Blame' is obviously their 'slow song', with its down-tempo drumming and pretty riffs, until the chorus erupts in a sea of shouting and loud guitars. Again, the vocals sound like an English teenager trying their best impression of Chester Bennington.
So metal is still alive and well and still spelling its names wrongly. Although this CD could've been a lot worse (at least they stayed away from hip-hop beats and rapping), it could stand to be a lot better. The production values are spot on though, with everything sounding on top form, and mix wise, it's all there. It's just the tunes themselves that need the work. The sixth form lyrics don't help, but then again, the lead singer is only 18, so we can cut him some slack there. If this is anything to go by, then I'm sure that they'll no doubt go far, and not be flipping burgers in McDonalds like the rest of their Nu-metal contemporaries.