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Thread: God's Weird/Obscure Music Reviews

  1. #81
    bomberboy's Avatar Domesticus
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    Default Re: God's Weird/Obscure Music Reviews

    Quote Originally Posted by God View Post
    I promise I'll stop doing rap reviews after this one bomberboy
    No do them, I like reading them.

    Edit: This guys alright I like the first one but interupted the second one to edit this.
    Last edited by bomberboy; September 03, 2008 at 04:18 PM.
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  2. #82
    vizi's Avatar Vicarius Provinciae
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    Default Re: God's Weird/Obscure Music Reviews

    Interesting. I will investigate further. Good review btw. And more metal! Or something.

  3. #83
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    Default Re: God's Weird/Obscure Music Reviews

    Yeah more metal!

    Edit: Only joking of course. Do what you want.
    Last edited by bomberboy; September 04, 2008 at 10:08 AM.
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  4. #84
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    Default Re: God's Weird/Obscure Music Reviews

    Fiiiiiiiiine.

    I think I've run out of rap albums anyway, except Deltron 3030 which I can't be bothered to review.

  5. #85
    vizi's Avatar Vicarius Provinciae
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    Default Re: God's Weird/Obscure Music Reviews

    You don't have to do metal. But a change of pace would be nice!

  6. #86
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    Default Re: God's Weird/Obscure Music Reviews

    Buddy Lackey ~ The Strange Mind of Buddy Lackey (1993)
    progressive metal

    It may be a bold statement to make, but Psychotic Waltz is arguably the most underrated metal band of all time. With complex song structures, amazing technical musicianship and genuinely beautiful melodies, the band created 4 albums, all (except the underrated third, ‘Mosquito’) to nearly unanimous praise, at least among those who heard them. One of the main reasons for Psychotic Waltz’s success though, was the incredible lead vocals of Buddy Lackey, who now records under the name Devon Graves with his new band Deadsoul Tribe.

    Lackey’s first and only solo album ‘The Strange Mind of Buddy Lackey’, was released in 1993, after Psychotic Waltz’s second album, ‘Into the Everflow’ and the third ‘Mosquito’. ‘The Strange Mind of Buddy Lackey’ gives an early indication of the direction Waltz would go with their music, replacing the lengthy intricate song structures with a much less complex sound focusing much more on their psychedelic music influences.

    ‘The Strange Mind of Buddy Lackey’ has a much cruder and less polished sound than the Psychotic Waltz albums, replacing the haunting atmosphere and densely layered sound with a rough simpler and more commercialised riff-orientated sound. This is done quite well however, and there is still much influence from Psychotic Waltz’s prog beginnings with plenty of time signature changes and odd song structures that keep the music gripping, though the odd structure on ‘Windsong’ does get a bit annoying with the song’s constant stops and starts. All of the riffs are very catchy and memorable and are easily good enough to be listened to again and again.

    There is also a lot of variety that stops the album getting at all boring. Acoustic guitars, piano and flutes all make appearances that give certain songs a nice folky/psychedelic sound, and the music ranges from cheerful and bright, like on ‘Let’s Start a War’ which is built on single bouncy and slightly cheesy riff, to haunting, like on ‘Singing’ without sounding at all disjointed. The songwriting is not quite as memorable as that from Psychotic Waltz however, and while this too has a mixture of heavy and light sections they are not mixed together nearly as well as Psychotic Waltz did, and the changes don’t feel quite as natural or smooth.

    Buddy Lackey’s amazingly versatile singing is definitely the focus here. He is able to alter his voice completely from frantic shouting to a haunting ethereal wail seemingly effortlessly, constantly changing his style to go along with whatever mood the music is trying to convey. His singing is quite high-pitched and while definitely unique, could put some people off. At times it becomes slightly too nasally, a problem that would plague ‘Mosquito’, though it is not nearly as noticeable here. His lyrics are as strong as ever, and while not containing the complex metaphors of early Psychotic Waltz, they are still cryptic and extremely well written, focusing mainly on psychedelic themes.

    Lackey’s backing band is also good. None of the music is that complex but guitarists Frank Jauernick and Dick Godau in particular manage to excel by creating some great solos. The drumming and bass playing doesn’t stand out that much as particularly impressive, but does the job perfectly. Buddy Lackey’s Jethro Tull-inspired flute playing is consistently impressive though, and his piano playing is also a nice inclusion, and gives the album a certain uniqueness from most other metal albums.

    The problem with ‘The Strange Mind of Buddy Lackey’ though is the production. Especially on the heavier tracks the guitars sometimes sound a bit weak and thin and the low-key production makes the entire album sound slightly amateurish. The album mostly isn’t really that heavy because of this, and it’s actually mainly quite relaxing for a metal album. This is a bit of a disappointment after listening to the Psychotic Waltz albums though, which all contain a very rich and deep sound that is completely missing here. This doesn’t affect the lighter songs quite as much though, so these songs, like the folky ‘Just Like A Timepiece’ end up being the strongest on the album. This song was actually remade by Lackey’s new band Deadsoul Tribe with much better production and actually sounds inferior in many ways to the solo version.

    Overall it’s a decent album and a nice alternative to heavier metal, but can only really be recommended to those already familiar with Psychotic Waltz and Deadsoul Tribe, otherwise they are better places to go first if you’re interested.

    1/2 / 5

    Spoiler Alert, click show to read: 
    I can only find one song from the album on youtube:

  7. #87
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    Default Re: God's Weird/Obscure Music Reviews

    Nice album and review, I didn't know that the lead singer did a solo album.
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  8. #88
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    Default Re: God's Weird/Obscure Music Reviews

    Theatre of Hate ~ Westworld (1982)
    gothic rock/post-punk

    Gothic rock is a very misunderstood genre nowadays. With bands like H.I.M and Evanescence now being tagged as ‘gothic’, many people don’t know that the original gothic bands were an offshoot of the post-punk genre that was very popular in the early 1980’s.

    Released in 1982, Theatre of Hate’s ’Westworld’ shows strong influence from post-punk like Joy Division and early gothic bands such as Bauhaus and Christian Death, so fits nicely into the classic goth rock subgenre, mixing usually quite simple punk music with a very dark and brooding atmosphere.

    The album opens with the fantastic ‘Do You Believe In The Westworld?’, one of the best songs of the album and one that highlights the biggest strength of Theatre of Hate; being able to mix bouncy energetic punk music with a melancholy atmosphere perfectly, so that the music always sounds very moody but also very catchy and accessable and gripping throughout its entire running length.

    A lot of the focus of the album’s music is on the rhythm section, with bassist Stan Stammers’ excellent melodic basslines and gallops and Luke Rendle’s quite complex and inventive drumming driving the album forward. Often the electric guitar is only used as background instrument to add an extra layer to the music when needed, and only the drums and bass play. The real highlight though is the amazing saxophone (and occasionally clarinet) playing of John 'Boy' Lennard. The saxophone gives the music much of its uniqueness and contributes greatly to the overall atmosphere by usually playing slow sorrowful melodies that sound as if they are echoing from the distance. Occasionally the saxophone is brought forward such as in the chorus of ’Conquistador’, but never becomes at all cheerful sounding. In ’Conquistador’ it gives the music a more ’epic’ sound. A piano is also used at times to enhance the atmosphere, but is usually kept to playing just simple melodies and doesn’t do a lot more. It does it’s job effectively though, and fits with the minimalistic style of the rest of the music.

    Kirk Brandon sings on the album. His singing, while technically not brilliant, fit’s the music perfectly. He sings in quite a calm and slightly high-pitched tone, singing every note with the same doleful emotion. Even though he doesn’t have a huge singing range he can change his voice enough to fit the music, shouting more aggressively at the heavier parts. Brandon’s lyrics, focusing on politics, anguish and loss aren’t particularly impressive but also fit the music perfectly. Backing singers are also sometimes used, including a female backing singer who sings a song by herself, ‘Anniversary’. Like Brandon she is not technically impressive but sings with the same emotion, adding perfectly to the eerie haunting feel of the track.

    None of the original album tracks are at all weak and the album is very consistent throughout. The bonus tracks, ’Nero’, ‘Incinerator’ and ‘Propaganda’ are not quite as strong though, focusing more on the punk aspect of Theatre of Hate‘s music than their more atmospheric side.

    The album’s production is very strong, and can be credited for creating the dark mood. Even when the instruments are playing lively tunes like on ‘Freaks’ (a song complete with a section where they play circus music) the sound remains down-tempo and bleak. While the guitars are mixed quite far back they still have plenty of power and are kept from overpowering the rhythm and saxophone dominated music which would probably ruin the atmosphere. Because it is quite minimalistic and not nearly as excessive as many other bands from the early 1980’s, save for a few echo effects, it has aged quite well. However, there are some times where it can sound quite dated. This isn’t that much of a problem however, and is quite easy to ignore.

    Overall, ‘Westworld’ is a fantastic album, and except for the slightly dated production and at times slightly weak singing there is little about it that can be criticised.

    1/2 / 5

    Spoiler Alert, click show to read: 
    Conquistador


    Do You Believe in the Westworld?


    Love is a Ghost
    Last edited by God; September 17, 2008 at 01:27 PM.

  9. #89
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    Default Re: God's Weird/Obscure Music Reviews

    That band sounds intresting.
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  10. #90
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    Default Re: God's Weird/Obscure Music Reviews

    I got excited when Westworld was mentioned! I loved that movie.

    I will check these guys out. I tend to like what you like. It would seem that our musical tastes are much the same.

  11. #91
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    Default Re: God's Weird/Obscure Music Reviews

    Hey I've seen a pattern every gothic rock group you review is always influenced by Joy Division. Its almost like thats the only band they ever listened to. Besides not everything was gloomy it probably
    wasn't really like that at all the surviving band members have often said.
    Last edited by bomberboy; September 19, 2008 at 10:24 AM.
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  12. #92
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    Default Re: God's Weird/Obscure Music Reviews

    Well the music itself was definitely gloomy. And I've only reviewed 2 goth albums, the first Dead Can Dance, which was definitely very Joy Divisionesque (they moved away from that after the first album though), and Theatre of Hate, which isn't quite as much but definitely influenced by it.

    Joy Division is a bit like Black Sabbath in a way I think. Black Sabbath may not have been doom metal but pretty much every doom band lists Sabbath as a major influence and shares lots of similarities, same as JD is with goth rock.

    Quote Originally Posted by vizigothe View Post
    I got excited when Westworld was mentioned! I loved that movie.
    I've not seen the film but I know it's set in an amusement park (with evil robots), probably if the album is named after it that is the atmosphere they were trying to convey in the song 'Freaks' with it's twisted carnival music. It's a creepy song
    Last edited by God; September 19, 2008 at 10:40 AM.

  13. #93
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    Default Re: God's Weird/Obscure Music Reviews

    Some say Joy Division was like the Doors and Velvet Underground plus David Bowie. But I just can't see them like Black Sabbath though.
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  14. #94
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    Default Re: God's Weird/Obscure Music Reviews

    Well not musically, but similar as they both had a huge influence on later genres (goth & doom metal)

    EDIT: On a related note, listen to the similarities to the last 2 tracks on 'Closer' and try to find the JD lyric
    Last edited by God; September 19, 2008 at 10:51 AM.

  15. #95
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    Default Re: God's Weird/Obscure Music Reviews

    Quote Originally Posted by God View Post
    I've not seen the film but I know it's set in an amusement park (with evil robots), probably if the album is named after it that is the atmosphere they were trying to convey in the song 'Freaks' with it's twisted carnival music. It's a creepy song
    Well at present I am listening to all my albums in alphabetical order...so it might be sometime before I get to West World...I might cheat, but defiantly check Westworld out. It is a pretty cool movie.

  16. #96
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    Default Re: God's Weird/Obscure Music Reviews

    Quote Originally Posted by God View Post
    Wire are, if you ask me, the most underrated punk band ever.
    That's so true. "Pink Flag" is an excellent album. Great reviews by the way
    Last edited by IMPERATOR_5; September 19, 2008 at 04:09 PM.
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  17. #97
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    Default Re: God's Weird/Obscure Music Reviews

    Quote Originally Posted by IMPERATOR_5 View Post
    That's so true. "Pink Flag" is an excellent album. Great reviews by the way
    Yeah, 'Pink Flag' is incredible. 'Chairs Missing' and '154' are amazing too.

  18. #98
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    Default Re: God's Weird/Obscure Music Reviews

    Trivium ~ Shogun (2008)
    metal

    While Trivium have always from the very beginning been a controversial band that most people seem to either love or hate, they received most of their criticism from fans and haters alike after their previous 2006 release, 'The Crusade'. On 'The Crusade' they took their Metallica influences to a whole new level and were attacked for being nothing more than a cheap imitation, and even for stealing from the band. On 'Shogun', Trivium have taken the criticism and moved back towards the earlier sound of their 2005 album 'Ascendancy', but with newer influences that never overbear on their music or 'rip-off' other bands. The production is also quite good, staying heavy but allowing for quite a melodic sound.

    Despite the terrible cheesy song titles where Trivium don't seem to be able to decide if their album has a feudal Japanese or an ancient Greek theme, the songwriting is much improved from 'The Crusade'. While the songs all follow quite a simple formula, there are definitely some catchy riffs and decent solos all through the album and Trivium seem to mainly have escaped the Metallica 'inspired' sound of 'The Crusade'. While the riffs are often still quite thrashy, they never come at all close to sounding like Metallica clones. The rest of the instrumentation is also pretty impressive and much improved from previous releases, though the focus is definitely on the guitars.

    Matt Heafy has also stopped singing in the same style as Metallica's James Hetfield, now using a style more similar to his earlier work, albeit improved. The screams of the earlier albums are also back, even though Heafy previously stated that he didn't like bands that scream.

    The problem is, while the clean singing is definitely improved from before, the vocals are still absolutely horrible and destroy any enjoyment gained from the catchy guitars. The best parts of the album are the song introductions before Heafy opens his mouth and the solos. While there are at times quite catchy vocal melodies like those on the choruses of 'Kirisute Gomen' and 'The Calamity', the clean singing is usually very monotonous and at times slightly whiny, though not nearly as bad as they were on the first few albums, and at least he's not merely mimicking Hetfield anymore. The screamed vocals though are completely atrocious. Coming in at often predictable times they sound far too weak and forced, often ruining the music.

    At over an hour long, the album does definitely drag on for far too long and many of the songs definitely last far longer than they need to. 'Shogun' especially is one of the best tracks but at over 10 minutes is especially guilty of this. All of the catchy choruses (and they aren't often that catchy) Trivium can throw in can't save the album from ending up sounding boring, predictable and repetitive. If some of the weaker tracks like 'Of Prometheus and the Crucifix' were taken out the album would more enjoyable on the whole.

    Despite a few changes, nothing really changes much and the album follows a similar formula throughout, which eventually gets boring. Many of the guitar riffs are quite bland and generic, with few being really impressive. The acoustic section at the start of 'Kirisute Gomen' fails to create any real atmosphere and sounds out of place, and despite the huge hype around them, many of the solos are technically quite impressive though often actually quite boring to listen to. The other instruments merely do their jobs without adding much more to the music.

    Overall, 'Shogun' is an improvement on 'The Crusade' and much more of Trivium's own sound, but is too long, and despite being improved, Matt Heafy's vocals are often absolutely terrible, destroying the rest of the music.

    1/2 / 5

    Spoiler Alert, click show to read: 
    Kirisute Gomen


    The Calamity

  19. #99
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    Default Re: God's Weird/Obscure Music Reviews

    Thats the worst score I've ever seen you give. It's that bad?
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  20. #100
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    Default Re: God's Weird/Obscure Music Reviews

    Trivium are definitely a love-them or hate-them band. I actually think this is their best album.

    The songs I posted are I think the album's best by the way.

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